God I miss cycling.
My cycling passion started circa 1995 when I started doing yard work for one of my neighbors while living out on the Issy-Hobart Rd. Don and Barb Shelton were avid cyclists and kept all their bikes in the garage close to where they stored their lawn mower. Every week I’d go over to their place to mow their lawn, but before I set out on that grueling two hour task, I’d spend 10-15 minutes oogling their cycling mecca. Don rode a custom Land Shark. Black red and yellow carbon fibre frame, full Campangolo group and fresh Continental Gran Prix rubber. The thing didn’t weigh more than 13lbs with pedals. A real work of art. Barb had a blue Serotta – aluminum frame and midde of the road components. More of a touring bike, but far more expensive than I could afford. They also had a brushed aluminum Santa Cruz tandem that was just a beast. 2" aluminum down tube, perfect TIG welds – just awesome.
Don saw me admiring their collection one day and mentioned that he and Barb were going out on an STP training ride that coming weekend and asked if I wanted to go. I had purchased a Specialized mountain bike a few weeks back and hadn’t done anything "big" with it yet so I said sure, not knowing what I was really getting into.
That next weekend we loaded up their Taurus station wagon with their tandem, Barb’s Serotta and my Specialized and set off for a park and ride somewhere on SR202…
…wow this is getting long winded.
Long story short, I was hooked. I had no problem keeping up with "pros" on road bikes while riding my knobby tired Chromoly mountain bike. It left me wanting more.
Not too long after that my mountain bike was stolen. It was replaced with a 50cm Cannondale R800 – team colors (red/yellow) full Ultegra 600 and fast – omg was it fast. I rode that thing all over the place – easily logging 1000’s of miles.
I knew I had offically made the switch from mountain biker to roadie when I was riding home from a friends house one day. He lived up on the top of Cougar Mt and the road down averaged a 12% grade back into Issaquah. I stopped at the bottom of the hill, my face streaked with tears from the wind, red cheeks and racing heart. A convertable porche pulled up next to me and the guy said, "Hey, did you know you were going 55 down that hill?". I smiled, "Yeah.", was the only thing I managed to get out.
55mph on a bike. Unreal!
Over a decade later, my Cannondale now sits in my garage. Neglected and collecting dust. I haven’t put a foot to pedal in years. My cycling flame was snuffed out with the advent of a drivers license, sports cars, school, work and a million other excuses.
Until last week.
Walking through the MS Commons to get lunch with Meghan, we happened upon the newly opened campus bike shop. A glimmer caught my eye and I turned to see a super sexy ’07 S-Works Roubiax Dura Ace on display. Needless to say the spark was re-ignited. But, like with other gear intensive hobbies, cycling isn’t cheap and I didn’t have their $3000 asking price just laying around.
We’ll see what the summer brings.