Is it that this little guy doesn’t know any better, staying in full bloom on a cold wet night in late November, or is it simply more brave, more daring, unwilling to accept as assumed fate?
I salute this Sunflower because it dares to run counter to the norm. It sees opportunity continuing. Perhaps it’s adapting to its environment. Perhaps I see something of myself in this Sunflower. My refusal to see winter as an excuse to hibernate, but rather get out there and continue to ride, despite the cold, despite the wet, despite even the opportunity to actually get in a good workout on an indoor trainer (made tolerable only because you can imagine, using a copious amount of computer hardware and a connection to the internet, that you’re actually riding outside).
We are made to be outdoors. Some of us anyway. Which brings me to that Sunflower. Why can’t our customers be more like that Sunflower? Why do so many either stop or seriously curtail their riding as if they’ve been programmed to since birth, like a plant that can’t possibly survive the winter? Well, if that Sunflower can do it, so can we!
The weather can be a bit of a crapshoot for the annual Thanksgiving Day ride, but today, while perhaps a bit cold at times, was a great day to be out on a bike.
Just a few of us this time; myself, Kevin (my son; the pilot’s in Australia), Karen and Lanier. It was the usual Sunday routing; up Old LaHonda (where the other three rode on ahead while I was still trying to find my legs), the duck pond detour (ALWAYS worthwhile and this morning particularly so, with the mist coming off the pond and a large number of ducks), Haskins (the other three seemed to have mellowed out a bit here so I had not too much trouble hanging on), then breakfest/early lunch in Pescadero. Temperature on the way out ranged from 36 to 43 degrees, until we got near the coast where it warmed up nicely to 56.
Lanier is a worthy addition to our rides; he’s a time trial specialist and pulled us very strongly into Pescadero. Strongly enough that both Kevin and I had new personal bests for that segment, even though we, or at least I, had nothing to do with the effort.
Food at the Mexican restaurant that’s part of the gas station in Pescadero is unexpectedly good and very reasonably priced. Not to mention the only game in town on Thanksgiving, when the rest of the businesses are closed! Kevin quickly knocked down two tacos; I ate one.
Stage Road… slight headwind, not bad. The coast? Beautiful and clear. This time of year, it’s very common for the weather to be much nicer (warmer) along the coast than anywhere else. Often more clear too! Obviously no exception today.
Tunitas? I’d love to say it was fun, but it was… OK, it was fun. We weren’t in a rush, although Lanier was clearly in the best shape of anyone, doing one minute intervals every five minutes, and then circling back to the rest of us. Impressive! Even Kevin wasn’t interested in trying to duplicate his efforts.