19 June 2010


Rainy Days and SaturdaysDay Zero
Registration Day
12 June 2010

Just received what probably is our final Ride the Rockies email before we ride… Alison Dunlap is going to be the guest speaker in Durango!!! They're also asking riders not to spend more than 10 minutes at rest stops. They asked riders not to turn 8-hour days into 10-hour days. Ummm, my big mileage days will be longer than that because I'm so slow!!!

Our "Ride the Divide" DVD finally arrived. Perfect timing. The Lizard was so excited, he went digging through my purse to retrieve it so we could watch it before we ride!!!! He's NEVER fished through my purse for anything before!

I cut my bangs because I decided I don't want to deal with them during the ride. I would have cut all my hair off so I don't have to deal with it, but I'm growing it out for Locks for Love, and it's not quite long enough yet. Pulling it back into a ponytail every day isn't going to do much for it, but I'll do the best I can. Some little kid somewhere will be happy to have my hair. Even if it does have a few extra split ends after this week.

The Great Flying JerseyI got such a kick out of The Lizard picking out his kits (cycling clothes). Now that he has a European-style jersey with a full zipper, he wants to wear it unzipped, fluttering in the breeze as he climbs the Grand Mesa so he'll look just like the pros on the Tour de France. Oh, how I wish I could ride as fast as him so I could get a picture of that! Maybe I can get him to fake it sometime…

I had to work Friday morning, even though I was supposed to have the day off. Thinking back, I realized I had to work partial days the day I'd planned to leave for both of my previous RtR trips. Maybe this turn of events is my good luck charm. Or tradition.

I got off at noon. Traffic was so horrific, it took more than an hour to get home. Then I spent the next hour moving all my indoor veggies outside, hoping like heck we get at least a bit of rain during the next week, that the sun doesn't fry them and the bunny doesn't eat them.

Youthful EntrepreneurWe had lined up a teenager to take care of the house and garden while we're gone, but he was taking college entrance exams and forgot about us. We couldn't wait any longer, so we locked up the house and hoped for the best.

Rain was really coming down when we left town. I was driving the rental car. Lack of visibility and storm intensity brought on flashbacks of my vehicle rollover back in '96, in similar conditions. I haven't had such flashbacks in years, and now, on the eve of the biggest tour of my life, I was transformed into a bundle of tear-stained nerves. I was on edge driving the rental car because I wasn't familiar with it and didn't know what to expect from it. I gradually gained confidence, and finally the rain let up. I even turned on the radio, and later, I even sang out loud! (Who can resist Doobie Brothers "Listen to the Music"???)

We arrived in Salida more than half an hour before RtR paid parking was supposed to close. No lot attendant. Lots of riders lingered, wondering what to do. All of us left notes in our windshields, hoping that would suffice.

Our First Tent SpotHail in Delta forced us to seek shelter for the rental car a couple of times, and rain continued all the way to Grand Junction. The registration desk and official merchandise tent were not open yet when we arrived. So The Lizard scouted out the college where we will be staying for the next two nights for the perfect tent spot and then set up our camp in a downpour. We had planned to take the rental car to the airport together, then ride back to the campus as a final training ride. Because of the weather, The Lizard preferred to return the car on his own while I kept an eye on the tent and bikes. We assumed he would be able to catch a ride or shuttle back to the college, but the rude person at the rental office refused, and The Lizard walked all the way back to campus in the rain.

Filling UpMeanwhile, I took pictures and got the tent ready. When The Lizard finally returned, we charged the cell phones (although we probably won't have signal the entire tour), wrote in our journals, I finished crocheting one sock, and we ate dinner. When we got back to our tent, some Bozo had locked his bike to the bench next to our tent, completely blocking our entrance into our own tent! We fumed and went for a walk.

On our walk, we found a quiet, vacant grassy spot clear across campus, so we moved the tent.


A mother alley cat and her three kittens live near a flower garden just across the walk. We enjoyed watching the kittens chasing butterflies when the rain finally let up.

GRRRR!Michael Martin Murphy was one of the concert headliners. His offerings included, "Wildfire." Boy, did that ever take us back in time!!!

We decided if we like the RtR route next year and get drawn again, we would like to ride to the start and ride home from the finish. Is that an adventure or what?!?

I'm nervous, excited, anxious, exhilarated, worried, giddy, apprehensive, happy… I can't believe the flood of emotions streaming through me right now!

I can't believe RtR is here. I can't believe we start riding tomorrow!


  1. Ahh, you're amazing to grow your hair for Locks of Love. Mine is the ongest it has been for about 10 years (i grew it for the wedding) and now i feel quite attached.

    I'll bear Locks of Love in mind for when i get the mad urge to cut it all off again :)

    Good luck with the ride, looks like Day 1 went well.


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