|Bike ride, lots of driving, play
||[Apr. 19th, 2004|07:45 pm]
Busy weekend. A small pod of us went down to Mexico for the Rosarito-Ensenada ride, then I drove up to the L.A. area to see the play Remodelling Plans.
My friends D and N, and her friends J and G, all got down here by about 23:00 Friday evening; by the time we got everything organized for leaving, it was sometime after midnight. We didn't get to the hotel until nearly 2a...
The day of the ride started rather overcast, but we didn’t think anything of it — I just figured it was a marine layer that would blow off.
Wrong. Less than five miles out, it was raining, cold (well, for SoCal), and really windy, coming right off the ocean. There were times I felt it was going to blow me over, and I was probably one of the heavier riders out on the course.
The first 20 miles really sucked; I had only done the ride once before (last September), and it had been too hot and sunny — so I had lots of sunscreen, Gatorade, water, etc ... but no jacket or rain pants. (Although I did have a brand-new Arrogant Bastard Ale cycling jersey to keep me warm.)
Going up the hill warmed us up, and by the time we were at the top of the hill it had just about stopped raining. The descent off the plateau was dry, which I was very glad for — I’d seen too many people that obviously didn’t bike much, and negotiating a pretty steep descent while it’s wet isn’t something I recommend for a novice...
The last haul into town was a bit longer and stinkier than I remember, and I also came in just as they were closing the race (and thus opening some pretty narrow roads up to motor vehicle traffic again). It wasn’t that I was slow; I was just stopping to help people fairly often (one derailleur cable reattached and chain shortened; one flat repaired; various other mechanical adjustments along the way.)
I met up with the rest of the group about halfway from the finish line to the fiesta; we had a few beers, then made it to the shuttle loading zone. A vendor was selling blankets and panchos; I wasn’t going to bother, but N was generous enough to get me one as a bit of a present, and it helped a lot. (It was also nice to know that we just had a bus ride and a hotel stay to look forward to, so I could have some beer without worrying about having to drive all the way back to SD that evening...)
The ride back was really amusing; it was the last shuttle out, thus really crowded. Some entertaining people were along for the ride.
Finding decent food in a calm atmosphere was a bit challenging; Rosarito is more of a Spring Break hangout than I thought (at least at the moment). We eventually ate at “Nido’s”, and it was really good.
A lazy start the next morning, then we were ready to head back up to San Diego. Getting through the line at the border went much faster than last September; we only waited about 45 minutes, instead of 90+.
Waiting in line at the border, another cyclist came over and knocked on the window. (A rather tall, attractive, blonde cyclist, at that.) She asked us where we were cycling next weekend, and when we said we didn’t have any plans, she handed us a registration form for the Alpine Challenge.
I’m tempted to go, but I have no idea if I’m in good enough shape to finish even the 30km ride, let alone the metric century. The elevation profiles are more than a little intimidating...
Back at my place, we put N’s and G’s bikes into N’s car, J’s bike into hers, put mine away. The other two cars headed up to L.A., while D and I stopped for a bite at Ranchos, then I took him back to Pasadena.
When I dropped him off, I got to meet his new roommates (he’d just moved in a week or two earlier) and check out the new place. I didn’t realize how late it had gotten; when I went back out to my car, it was 18:37 — and my cousin’s play started at 19:00.
Fortunately, I have many years’ experience in driving like an asshole in traffic.
I made it from Pasadena to North Hollywood in less than 20 minutes, getting to the theater about 5 minutes before the show started.
The play was really fun and really funny, but also really damned odd. I enjoyed it, even with the lingering “uh, what the hell is going on?” vibes. A good time.
I really need to see my cousin in a non-gonzo role, though; both this character and her role in a play last year were totally over the top. Which she loves playing, but still.
When I got home, I tried to figure out why I was so tired. Then I realized that on top of the 50-mile ride the day before, I had also driven some 350 miles just that day. Uhg.
So now I’m just very tired.
And I have to think about whether I want to hurt myself next weekend.
But I had a great time this weekend. I’m particularly impressed with my friend from L.A. and her friends: none of them had ever done more than 10-15 mile rides, and they finished a 50-miler, in some really horrible conditions. Great job. :)