Nerac Riders: Jill, Mike, Steve and Pete
Lots of things are new to me lately. Strava, my bike, different rides and people on those rides. I got a message on Strava about the B+ ride at Alternative Spoke listed under NERAC Earth Cycling. After a couple of text with Steve, of course during my breaks at work-never while I was supposed to be working!!, I decided to try this new ride out.
Of course karma was in full swing and I got tied up at work getting out an hour late. On the up side I found my old beat up truck would do 80 mph all the way from Manchester to Stafford then back to Willington without the motor blowing up (a new thing)!
So I flew home changed, grabbed a Clif bar, helmet, shoes and my new bike. I got to the ride with 5 minutes to spare. As I was getting my bike and stuff together I realized I forgot my seat pack (a new thing), so no tube tire levers or CO2, too late now I’m going without it.
After chatting with Mike, Jill and Steve they introduced me to Ed Saunders the ride leader. Then after the B ride left we were off. We ventured out into Tolland, Ellington, Vernon and eventually back Willington.
It was in Ellington that I flatted with no tube or anything. Luckily Steve is a great guy and gave me his tube and CO2. Thankfully Jill didn’t give me “the riding with no spare lecture”, although she wanted to, I lucked out because there was a couple walking their dogs so her attention went to them and I changed the tube as fast as I could.
We eventually headed back to Willington, it was getting pretty dark I thought “would have been nice if I didn’t forget to put my new blinky light on my new bike” when my new bottle holders starting pitching out my water bottles, I wasn’t stopping for them so I just rode the last 10 miles dry.
All in all it was a fun ride everyone chatting, good climbs and fast downhills. Our leader Ed had a good loop going despite the new bike guy being a p.i.t.a. with problems. Back in the parking lot he said for us to come back and ride anytime. Then he came over to check out my new bike and see if anything was still left on it he commented “well at least your motor was running really good”.
Also Ed does an excellent job as a ride leader. He reads the group and keeps an appropriate steady pace. He also patiently lets the ride regroup whenever possible. This makes the ride enjoyable for everyone as it takes the pressure of riders who climb slower. He also managed to ride and chat with everyone in the group. Nice job Ed!!
I’ll be back for this ride but next time I’ll be prepared with my bike dialed in, tubes, lights and new water bottles.-Pete