group ride fail
well, my first group ride of the off-season was a bust. i was super boring last night and stayed in to fill up my water bottles charge the garmin, lay out my cold weather clothes for the ride and just take it easy. this morning, like a kid on christmas, i hopped up at eight, super excited, and flew on down to the bike rack bike shop at 14th and q. a coworker had told me the sunday ride was decent so i was looking forward to having other people to ride with during the interminable off season. with no one to pace me, i normally either lolly-gag and pay too much attention to the scenery or i push myself too hard on the first part of the ride and lose steam later on. there was a good group out in front when i got there and we started rolling toward reservoir road to make the trek out along mcarthur. i chatted with a nice older man as we rode along and focused on adhering to the etiquette of the group ride: i pointed to holes in the road, yelled "clear!" as we passed through intersections and made sure to keep the pace line tight.
well, let’s just say that the rider in front of me was not as conscientious. time after time she would narrowly avoid a pothole and i wouldn’t see it until too late. about 25-minutes in, she swerved right in front of a pothole the size of a grapefruit and i went directly through it. bam! bam! i pulled over and motioned for the group to continue without me. blast - i had not one—but two—flat tires. if course, today i only had one spare tube and no flat kit or gu packet to temporarily seal up the hole. i changed my rear flat and tried to rig something up for the front but no luck.
with a gimpy front wheel, i clacked my way to a nearby bus stop, convinced the driver to let me ride for free since i didn’t have my metrocard (or cash) on me and rode into town. thankfully the route dropped me off within a mile of my apartment so i just hopped off and wheeled my way home, dejected. and now i'm out of tubes and facing a busy day... guess my long ride is going to be replaced by a slightly run, or something like that. oh well, let’s try again next weekend—although, next time i may have to bring three spares and my hand pump...