Monday, March 03, 2008

Death by Bicycle

That’s what it’s called when a – what did Not the Momma say it was going to be – slow and leisurely bicycle ride turns into something that belongs in part of the Tour de France. We started off fine, pushing it a little bit up the hill. Then, we ended up PUSHING the bikes up the hill. On foot.

In all seriousness, we’ve been trying to be healthier in general. This includes daily walks, and playing outside more often, eating at home, etc. We have been scoping out bike routes since I got my bicycle a couple of weeks ago. We thought we had found a route. Nice and easy for our first trip. Part of it wasn’t accessible by car, but we could see most of it, and it didn’t look bad. After all, we’ve ridden through our neighborhood, and our house is on top of the hill, right? Right.

We started off strong. That was probably our big mistake. We should have started off slowly. Who cares if we would have looked like fools riding our bikes at a whole 3 mph, even if a herd of turtles did pass us and flip us the bird on the way by. We were taking the hill pretty well. We got to the top, and turned the corner to find… that the hill didn’t end. Ever. We turned the corner and stood there, looking up at the top of the hill, contemplating whether we should have brought our technical climbing gear, the hill seemed so steep. We powered through, though, because, hey, at the top of this hill, it’s downhill the rest of the way. Right? Right? RIIIIIIIIIGHT. Why didn’t the hill look this steep yesterday in the car?

Anxious to get to the downhill portion of the ride, we pumped it up and went full throttle. We rounded another corner, and finally crested the hill. There it was before us. The downhill portion of the road. When we saw the ‘downhill’ portion of the ride, we both considered just exactly HOW risky it would be to trek through the ‘unexploded ordinance’ area to get home. We could see our house. It was about 200 yards away. What really were the chances that we’d ACTUALLY step on an old land mine anyway? I mean, coyotes walk through here all the time, and I haven’t heard any explosions. But then my common sense (yes Mom, I still have some left), got the better of me. Like I told DH, “It’s better to get home, and feel dead, than to go through those bushes and BE dead.”

To illustrate our plight in mathematical terms, we thought the road was going to be a fairly steady incline, like the road we came in on. General slope of -1, (with an occasional rise and fall).

What was in front of us may have had an average slope of -1, but it looked more like a sine wave than a straight line. A sine wave with a VERY large amplitude. It looked like this:

We ended up walking our bikes up a couple of the hills, racing the downhill sections to get as much momentum as possible, so that we could ride as far up the hill as we could before we had to hop off and walk. There were a few times I contemplated puking. The baby whined the ENTIRE time, because the road was too bumpy ,the sun was in his eyes, his helmet was chaffing him, he didn’t like the song that was playing on my iPod(with speakers, not earphones), his water had spilled on his hand, the sun was in his eyes, and yeah, did I mention that helmet?

Do you think we learned anything? Um, probably not. We’re going to do it all again… Not the Momma would like to do it every weekend. Because, despite my incessant whining, the baby’s moaning and groaning, the sick feeling in my stomach, and the crazy ribbon of hilly road, we had fun. We had fun, together, as a family. We’ve got less than two years left together before Not the Momma returns to Sea Duty, and we’re going to soak (read: suck) it up – even if it means death by bicycle again.

1 comment:

Ashlee said...

You are brave. I wouldn't do it again. I'd tell my hubby to go by himself. :0) But kudos for making it!