|Ride to eat?|
I didn’t do STP (Seattle to Portland) this year because I felt I was already imposing on my spouse’s munificence by signing up for the five-day Ride Around Washington in August. While 8,000 riders and bandits did STP, I rode
SIR’s populaire in Olympia. It’s the same route as last year’s — Olympia to Rainier to Skookumchuck to Tumwater and back — and offered an opportunity to compare how well I’m biking relative to this time last year. (I was a worker-bee over winter and have been playing catch up the last two months.)
I was elated when I realized I’d knocked 40 minutes off last year’s time and had enough reserve to push extremely hard the last few miles in Olympia.
About 3 miles of our route overlapped with STPs. As I left Rainier, one of the infamous pacelines came up from behind. I’m not sure how, or why, but they slowed down and “absorbed” me. When my turn came up, I signalled and accelerated past the line to make my left. Shortly thereafter, I had a weird craving for a bacon-flavored Clif Bar.
The post-ride lunch at the Fish Bowl Pub in Olympia wasn’t as sociable as last year’s. Everyone knew everyone else except me. While I’m shit-happy because I just rode a great 100k, they’re comparing notes on the 1,200k they rode a few weeks ago. I felt like a tourist asking about the upcoming 200k.
(No bacon-flavored Clif Bars were harmed during this event.)