Musings on Bicycling and Buddhism

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Take my Breath Away (or sort of)

So what I'm talking about here is not this song by Berlin from the 1986 film Top Gun...

What I'm talking about is a little bit of this:

Running my very first 10k (Tuft's Health Plan Women's 10k) in record heat (for October), well over 80 degrees Fahrenheit... so it - quite literally - took my breath away.  Oh, I ran so very slowly, but finished I did, in 1:13:45.  Obviously I'm not someone for epic pro sports or anything, but I am someone who does what I say I will, and do my best no matter what obstacles come my way, be it hot weather or flat tires.  (Charlie was jealous he didn't get to do this too.)

Speaking of flat tires, I realized after the race that Charlie's back tire was a bit squishy.  Turns out (this we figured out the next morning), that there was a puncture right through the tire and the tube.  Pretty much a textbook situation for a patch kit, which I don't yet have.  What I did have was a spare tire and tube, ready to go.  Again what I didn't have was the right sized wrench for the job.  (When we lived in Waltham, I used our upstairs landlord, Jeremy's tools for things, as he and his wife Cindy are avid cyclists.  I haven't had to take the back wheel off by myself since then (Gasp!) and so, no wrench.)  So I filled up the tire as it leaked air, grabbed the extra tire, and set off toward Cambridge.  We made it before the wheel had gone to flat.  And Charlie and I waited outside the shop.

It was then that Manager Bud, Charlie's previous owner (personal savior (i.e. rescued him from the dumpster)) walked by and said jokingly that we shouldn't be stalking the shop and "what have you done this time?"... waiting for them to open of course.  They let Charlie and I into the shop and did what I lacked the tools to do.  All before the shop was open.  Thank you Cambridge Bicycle! (once again) And so as someone who has almost always had a job in which customer service was a part, to be the recipient of such excellent care, another sort of breath taking experience.  (If only all such customer service interactions could be so pleasant!)


Thanks be to:

-Courtney for telling me about her grand goal and letting me tag along, here is her documentation:

-Oscar's human, also known as Ryan, for waiting for me at the finish line, Gatorade in hand, even though he hates the heat.

- my sister, Abbie, for driving me around so that I could be lazy before the race.

-and to so many other folks for being awesome and supportive even if we all did doubt, just a bit, if my knee would last... well it did!  Here's to changing the status quo.....

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Tour de What You Will by Jessie Calkins is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License