After days of nasty heat, today was a blissfully foggy morning with a heavy marine layer giving merciful cloud cover for the morning ride. Much the same could be said metaphorically for my state of mind. Slogging against a steady, low headwind using legs giving the staccato cadence of a green Marine with Tourette’s Syndrome.
It wasn’t until mile 4 when I got passed by an eight hundred year old grandfather that my furrowed brow’s energy reached my thighs and I was able to accelerate past 18 mph. Gaining some satisfaction from passing Methuselah, I pushed harder south towards the ocean. Typically I’ll reach the cantina in El Segundo at 1/2 hour, which marks about 9 miles and provides a nice turnaround to head back. If I’m feeling really strong I can push this into a negative split, which means my return trip is faster than my outbound trip. Not today. I didn’t even make it to the RV park. Pathetic. As I turned about in a parking lot and sucked down water from my bottle, I thought to myself, “well, at least I beat the old guy”. At which point God’s older brother shot past me at mach 4 with a jaunty wave.
“Come on!” I yelled, quite loudly at my body, and turned up the gearing on the bike as a figurative slap in the ass. (More like a slap to the quads.) “But wait,” I thought. “The faster I get home, the sooner I have to stretch, shower, go grocery shopping, get dog food, be back home for the cleaners all while simultaneously fielding technical support phone calls on the cellphone (for which I don’t charge because they all fit inside the 5 minute grace period I afford my clients) and my ‘day’ starts at 9:30am. This moment, right here, is completely mine.”
I caught my breath, dropped down a gear, pushed out the chaos of the day that was inevitable and would come later, and started spinning.
And for a half an hour, the day was mine again.