Going out for a bike ride on a cold winter's morning takes a lot of determination. Weather forecast was 4c but somehow, there was a need to be in the outdoors and I was going to join Rod and Ken for the usual Wed ride, no matter what. Had a fun time preparing my bike, tools and snacks the night before while warming up in front of the heater, watching BBC Top Gear with Jeremy Clarkson punishing a red Hilux to the North Pole in -20c.
Though I knew it would be freezing, riding out of my house with "smoke" coming out of each breath, numb fingers, ears and nose made me wondered if I made the right decision as I sliced through the cold air at 30km/h. It was 6c even with the sun shining and I was shivering while I waited for my mates to show up.
It was really great to see them as I haven't contacted my mate Ken for a while. These two all weather cyclists were all rugged up, confirming the cold I felt through my bones! Even after several kms on the saddle, I was uncomfortably numb but very much alive and glad to be on the saddle. A most invigorating experience.
We were taking it easy riding side by side, soaking in the beautiful scenery and planning our next long ride to Bunbury in late Oct when a lapse of concentration caused me to side-swapped Ken. In an instant, I lost the handlebar and was flying to the ground. Good thing we were riding slowly but skin vs bike path, it was no contest. I was very grateful to God that Ken was fine. It was a blessing too to ride away with just minor bruises and a sprained finger. Most importantly, the Speed Pro was fine. Ken felt very bad but it my fault really. He joked, "A case of cause and effect." He being the cause of the effect! Another friend cheekily asked me later, "Did you love-the-fall?"
I washed my wounds and we carried on like nothing happened though I was smarting a little. We made it to Point Walter and enjoyed a lovely morning tea and priceless conversation. I learned that Rod had a minor operation on his face and leg just a few days ago, but he was still cycling away happily. I felt very inspired by his fortitude and was glad we were there despite both of us not being 100%.
As they say, the show must go on and indeed, it must when it comes to cycling. As it turned out, it was a most glorious morning well spent.
The man who can drive himself further once the effort gets painful is the man who will win. Roger Bannister