On the 4h of July I finally started feeling like a cyclist again. Yesterday I rode my tri-bike for the first time since before my accident. I sure the hell didn't feel like a triathlete! First of all, I was getting passed by fat guys on hybrids with aero-bars, and second of all I had trouble staying down on my aero-bars. Second of all, my body has forgotten what it's like to maintain an aero position.
The last time I was at the Jersey shore and riding my bike I was in top shape. I'd cruise up and down 2nd Avenue looking for tri-geeks or roadies that I could ride with. I'd usually find someone who was about 10-15 years younger, and I'd get a good workout, and my ego would get a good boost. I'd revel in the comments of "You're in your late 40s? I was sure you were 35." Now I struggle to lose the stress weight and come back from the physical and emotional traumas of 2006, I have to deal with reality. "Hello!! You're 53, you haven't been riding very much, and these guys blowing by you have been down here every weekend since Memorial Day riding! What have you been doing??"
Even so, I can't help but to go on one of my one of my "people on bikes at the shore" rants. The people on bikes are scarier then the drivers. I never thought I'd be saying that. LOL!! I refer to them as "people on bikes" because I have trouble considering them as cyclists. (Yes, I'm a bike snob! I admit it!) Sorry but it's hard to take people seriously as cyclists when they ride on the wrong side of the street, aren't wearing helmets, are grinding away in the big ring with a cadence of 20 RPM, and their chain looks likes a "before picture" for Rustolium.
Riding after 9:30 AM on Saturday is a mistake. Between the "packs" (I use the term loosely) of family cyclists and the people coming and going it's pretty wild. You have Daddy and 5 kids trailing behind him. The kids all have helmets on, and Daddy doesn't. 1/2 the helmets are pushed back like a cap. Great fashion statement, lousy protection. Then you have the girl in a skimpy bathing suit, and several hormonally raged young men riding with her. Needless to say they are not watching the road. I also love the kids riding with one hand and hold a boogie board and towel in the other hand as they make their way to the beach. I saw another kid with one arm in a cast and steering withe the other. I have to wonder how he broke the one arm.
Today I managed to actually not get blown off by a serious tri-babe. If I were a guy I would have been trying to hit on her. Drop dead beautiful body. She look like one of those hot 40 year olds that comes blowing by me on the run like I'm standing still. She had those long legs of a runner. *Sigh* The legs I'd could only dream about. I guess she was taking it easy because she didn't totally dust me. I wanted to have a conversation, but she was off in her own world listening to her iPod. Don't get me started on cyclists listening to music on the bike. I like my music when I'm walking, but not on a bike when I've got 4 wheeled monsters coming from behind me.
This was a first. I was walking today on the road against traffic, and a nervous cyclist freaked out, and yelled at me for being on the wrong side of the road. Last time I checked it was "ride with traffic, run/walk against traffic." I guess I don't spend enough time at the shore dealing with beach people. But then again, I can't afford to. A dumpy old house near the ocean went for 5.1 million. The people will tear it down, and spend another million+ to build new one. This will be a second home. Damn it must be nice to have that kind of money. Can I get them to make a donation for my next TNT event?
Despite my rants and ramblings I really do love it down here. The beach is wonderful, and I love the sound of the ocean. I enjoy sitting on the beach after th lifeguards and most of the people leave. It's very serene and a nice time to sort out different thoughts and ideas. Here I am after one of my walks on the beach. This particular section allows kayaking and sailing. Some sections one can only swim. The ocean kayaks look like a lot of fun.