Sunday, April 09, 2006

Randonneur or Cyclotouriste

Jim and I had a big plan to prepare for the fleche next weekend by riding from Baltimore to Ocean City this Saturday. Friday night I predeployed my car at the west end of the bridge to ferry us across. There is a park and ride on the east end of the bridge, so leave the car there and ride on to the beach. Sunday we ride back to the car.

That's the plan. If we were good randonneurs we would finish the ride at all costs no matter what. However, it was pouring down rain all day. Right before we got to the bridge, the cold front responsible for the rain came through, the rain fell harder, the wind picked up, and the temperature dropped from the mid 50s to the mid 40s.

We decided to be something other than randonneurs on that day. We decided for us bike riding would be a pleasant, enjoyable experience, and if bike riding meant riding 8 or 9 hours soaked to the skin in wind rain and temps in the 40s, well then we'll just drive the last 90 miles to Ocean City. We were cyclotouristes.

I met Jim for breakfast to start at Sam's Bagels in Federal Hill. It was raining out.

Jim has his own special ways of dealing with the rain. Those are plastic grocery bags on his feet. This is a guy who claims to be embarassed to be seen riding with a guy on a recumbent (the "goofy bike"). He said he's not afraid of the Eastern Shore Fashion Police.

Here's a picture of the B&A trail in scenic Harundale.

Here is where we gave up. This is the parking lot of the gas staion at the east end of the Bay Bridge.

The gas station has Cheddarwurst! That did the job lifting our spirits. Also, changing into dry clothes helps. The bag has about 10 lbs of soaking wet fleece.

Cyclotouristes get to drink whiskey with pretty girls at the end of the day. Debra my wife took the picture, so don't worry.

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