Friday, July 20, 2007

Trying to Get Away, Into the Night

On Monday, Cycling Mentor Jamie gave me a lesson in how to change a flat tire. I also bought a little under-seat bag to carry an extra tube, tire levers, and a CO2 cartridge. It's stuff I should have had all along, frankly.

Today, on my first ride with my new supplies, I flatted 12 miles from home. Thanks to Jamie’s careful instruction, I thought I knew what to do. I calmly dismounted and got to work on changing the tube.

Just as I was finishing, a guy came out of his nearby townhouse to see if I had everything in hand. “You got it?” he asked.

“Yep,” I said, re-setting the chain, pride surging through my spandex-clad body. I felt victorious, actually. Like I'd accomplished an important and edifying triathlon rite of passage. I refastened my helmet and smiled at the guy. “I feel victorious,” I told him.

“Um,” he said. “Well. Good then.” He pinched the back tire and helped me spin the pedals to get the gearing worked out. “You should be ready to ride.”

So I did. For 11 more miles.

I didn’t find the second flat to be quite as empowering.

I didn’t have another tube, so I was forced to get off my bike and walk the last mile home across the Franklin Avenue bridge while wearing my form-fitting outfit, including shorts with a huge pad in the ass. My helmet hung from the handlebars, as I pushed my incapacitated cycling machine on the sidewalk while lots and lots of cars whizzed by.

I felt like a total tool, to tell you the truth.


KC said...

hi amy! I was running alone on Sunday and a little later than noon, but I ran along E River Pkwy to Lake Street, over the bridge, and then back on the other side to Franklin and back to PP.

We are actually really close to each other now! I always think of you when I drive by that DQ on L Street. How's the construction treating you?

AmyRobynne said...

That almost the exact path we took (feels a lot shorter by bike, I imagine). I was killing time during a showing and Leo fell asleep in the trailer, so I stopped at the DQ on the way home :)

I don't mind the construction, although our street's been part of it both summers. We're close to the edge, so it's not a big deal to turn left on 36th instead of our street. The boys love checking out the trucks. And there's something cool to see how many people dig up the old bricks every time they remove the pavement from a new section. I'm glad they finished the sidewalk on our side of the street early this year.

abby said...

I'm glad the song lyric titles made a come back. What's odd is I had been humming this very same song to myself all night, pre blog reading. (I was at Nye's earlier thinking up all the great karaoke songs that are not remotely in Lou's repertoire.)

cg said...

Oh my - dont know the Franklin Bridge, but I am proud of you for not hiding under the helmet!

Ann said...

I think it is simply awesome you were 12 miles from home. Keep peddling - I like the sounds of the kevlar tires. Go for it!

LH said...

you're no tool, mah frond.
You are masterful....