Sunday, July 26, 2009

Day 50 Latham NY to Brattleboro NH -- Thank yous and acknowledgements

Pictures are here.
Miles: 81
Total Miles: 3827
Time: 4:52
Average: 16.7
Max 46
Flats Today: 0; Total flats:9
Climbing: About 5000' total climbing
Weather: Partly sunny, a bit muggy and temps in low 80's. Gorgeous day overall!

Well, the number of posts is starting to dwindle so I'm going to do something a bit different.

Oh, the ride was great today -- beautiful Vermont mountain scenery, great weather with temps in the lower 80's and no rain as forecast, smooth surfaces on most roads and manageable traffic. And there was a mix of competitive riding on this last day of continuous climbing along with some leisurely riding as well. I caught Sean and Tom at the first SAG stop about 26 miles out and we rode together to the start of the climb. Sean kept a steady strong pace up the 4 mile 6% climb we had and Tom stayed on his wheel. Though I tried to stay with them, I could not and slipped back a ways before we got to the top. I had hoped to reach the top first, but they were both definitely stronger. Congratulations guys!

As a result of the aggressive pace to the top of that first climb, I got to the second SAG stop at close to 60 miles out just after Tom and Sean left and decided there was no point in pushing hard any further so I ended up chatting with Michelle a good long while until Steve and Jack arrived and the three of us finished the last climb and the long downhill to Brattleboro together.

But what I really want to do here is to offer some thank you's.

Thanks again to all who have donated to thes ride. Thanks Haide for your pledge to this ride for PwP. Haide, my step-mom has been such a wonderful encouargement, mentor and supporter to Pete over all these years and continues to support PwP year by year by volunteering and giving. Haide, I want to salute your part in Pete's life and the many other lives you have touched! Thanks for your support.

Also, Thank you's are in order to the great AbB crew that have made these past 50 days go SO well. Michelle and Gerard, you have done a great job in leading. You have been even tempered and even handed. You have been cheerful when it would have been easy not to be. You have responded to small and large requests quickly. You have spent endless hours souting out routes ahead of time, plotting reroutes, shuttling us to dinner, to airports, attractions and other places. You have been there to fix endless flats, spokes, wheels, shifters, derailleurs, cleats and anything else that ailed our bikes. You have set up SAG stops and torn them down only to set them up and tear them down again. You have joined in our fun with field trips, riding, gag shots, pace lines and whatever other crazy ideas were floated.

Judy, you've been a great support and a real asset to have along. You, have of course, willed and reminded us to ride safely. You have supported Gerard and Michelle in every way as far as I could tell, taking on the jobs that needed to be done. Tom -- your cheerfulness is infectious! You have the gift of encouragement for sure. Who could ever get upset with you! And, your wrenching skills were not bad either. Always filling in where there were needs. Alex, I loved your willingness to fit in with a bunch of folks 3 times your age and more. And, to do a lot of the grunt work that needed to get done -- cheerfully!

All of you have been great to ride with, chat with and hang with. Thanks SO much!

And, finally, to my fellow riders! I've enjoyed so much getting to know each one of you. Riding with you, sharing meals together and competing with some of you :=). I could not have imagined a better group to share this great adventure with. Thanks to each of you!

Tomorrow is the penultimate ride -- a time for dawdling, reflection and milking all there is on the road to Manchester before all of us spend our last evening together!

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