So now I can move on to something a bit more fun.
We are about a week and a half away from RAGBRAI here. And, though I don’t think I’ve mentioned this, I am riding the first day. Which means that on Sunday, July 19, I’ll be putting around 65 miles on my bike. Now, Orangekathy and Mary do the full week, but I am not at all prepared to do so. Instead, I’ll be riding with 2 gals from work. Bug will be hanging out, watching the ride, and then going fishing, so she will have her own wonderful adventure while I attempt to ride the furthest I’ve ever ridden in one day. I am very excited about this prospect and though I haven’t been doing much riding lately, I’ve kept my stair climbing up in hopes that this will help.
I’ll try to get pictures!
I’ve enjoyed biking so much this year that I’d like to get a new bike by next year. We will see….
Orangekathy pointed me in the direction of a ragbrai poem and I thought I’d repost it here. It is a little outdated as this is year 37 rather than 22. It certainly makes me want to do the whole ride rather than just the first day!
by Scott Murrish From: email@example.com (JUSTIN MURRISH)
As the bus approaches Iowa,
the land of the Field of Dreams,
We await the ultimate cycling vacation,
and discuss just what RAGBRAI means.
On the surface we’re just out cycling,
riding past the rolling farms,
But the truth is we are visiting friends,
the whole state awaits with open arms.
They will line the streets and welcome us,
as if heroes home from the war.
High fives and waves and “Where are you from ?”,
will make your spirit soar.
But beware the Super soaker kid,
there’s one in every crowd
I retaliate with my bottle full,
and an aim to make Schwartzkopf proud.
The morning sun crawls up from the corn,
the damp misty air gives me shivers,
I start each new day with great expectations,
rain or shine, it always delivers.
I start most days on Pork Chop Hill,
I wash them down with beers.
We shout “PORK CHOPS” at the passers by,
while the vegetarian sneers.
Sure there’s fruit and pancakes and cinnamon rolls,
all the standard breakfast fare.
And the java junkies hit their brakes,
“There’s espresso over there”.
The rules of the road are somehow forgotten,
sports nutrition is now but a joke.
This 500 mile long bake sale
would make Richard Simmons choke.
This never ending feast must feed
a horde 10,000 strong.
From day break through the dark of night,
the army rolls along.
With each new town we enter,
anticipation fills the air.
Where’s the music ? Where’s the beer ?
What are they eating over there ?
Should we eat now ? And maybe then a nap.
What the hell, let’s find the bar.
But I gotta make a pit stop first,
hope the ‘kybos’ aren’t too far.
Some folks come as elaborate teams,
with buses they travel in style.
And then there’s poor Team Bad Boy,
totin’ their stereo every mile.
“All the world is a stage” it’s true,
and this is rolling proof.
The mild mannered farmer shaking his head,
thinking, “What a buncha goofs”.
These Fields of Dreams are here for you too,
a chance to be someone different, to shine.
For one week and maybe 500 miles,
you’ve an audience of 9,999.
This is not the time or place for modesty,
we can be normal any time.
If we come out of our shells for just one week,
too much fun is our only crime.
It has been some 22 years now,
since the newspaper boys decided,
“We must prove that Iowa isn’t flat.
We’re crazy enough, let’s ride it!”
There’s no more doubt, to cyclists at least,
that this state is far from flat.
It’s these endless rolling hills of corn
that keep them coming back.
For others it’s the ‘udder’ simplicity
that gives this ride it’s charm.
An entire week without a complex thought
pedaling blissfully past the farms.
Like the “Thing That Wouldn’t Leave”,
or the giant slimy “Blob”,
This ride just keeps on growing,
a friendly, hungry, rolling mob.
So we sleep in a tent and we eat standing up.
So we drink more than Mother would like,
but we sweat it out, burn it off, and come home quite fit,
That’s the beauty of traveling by bike.
But there’s more to this ride than the food and the fun,
and the bike’s but a means to an end.
It’s the meeting same time and same place every year,
with 10,000 of your very best friends.