Saturday, October 1, 2011

While You Were Out... CX or watching some overblown sports event cast with people you don't know and never will, I was riding my bike in the woods; soul searching. It was a beautiful day, perfect weather and the great outdoors was calling my name. It seems as of late that I've been doing a lot of group rides and not enough solo rides or just me and a few good pals. I needed some kind of reunion with the why and what for of mountain biking. I found it today at Swope.
I went back to basics: grabbed some water, my rigid fixie and headed out for an adventure. No time clocks, no racing, no one else to lead or follow; nothing but me and my free spirit wondering around on buff singletrack beneath the changing leaves of fall. I discovered a few things on my journey. I love the solitude of riding alone. I love the quiet of a bike stripped of all of the ridiculousness that is technology (which truly takes away more than it gives). I love the fresh air on my face and the copper taste of fear when you have a near miss. I love the journey ,though the end has no face, only a feeling of accomplishment and renewal.
I rode all of Swope, alone. I pushed myself on different terrain. I dreamt of nothing more and wanted nothing more. True bliss. A great ride.
Just when I thought my morning couldn't get any better, my mentor, The Trail Asshole called. I knew it was once again game on for more of Swope, this time with a good friend. I rallied, got my shoes and soaking wet shirt back on and headed out for another good lap. The Trail A-hole and I were ripping Woodchuck run like we owned it, then through 8-pins and on to phase three. I never skipped a beat - even though I pedal striked at least 100* times in the rocky terrain. We kept a good pace though I was tired from my earlier venture. We would stop at giant log crossings and rock gardens to try different ways around, through and over them. We had a helluva grand time pushing each other to be better, laughing along the way.
Missing the CX races means so little when you can have a day full of peace in the saddle like I did today. It makes me want to travel again, like I did in my twenties, for months at a time. Exploring the world and its marvels, ahh what an adventure your life can be if you so choose the path. I'll end this rant with some words from one of my favorite artists of the day, Michael Franti, "No matter how life is today, don't let another moment slip away".

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