Familiar Territory

Assistant Ride Leader’s Log. Bike Date 22.15-06-13.13:25

Three days ago we rolled into Champaign and it was a little strange. I had already said my good byes to U of I at graduation, but it didn’t seem like I had transitioned into being an alum just yet. Regardless, it was really cool getting to ride into familiar territory. It was also amazing to realize how the same roads that we struggled on with our training rides were now smooth sailing. The tailwinds didn’t hurt either.

The next morning, the team had an opportunity to ride with some of our supporters in Champaign. I had the chance to ride in a group with some of them and got to learn a lot about various cycling events in Indiana as well as some closer to Champaign. Despite some adventures with a teammate popping a spoke, it was a fairly quick ride.

Yesterday, I woke up really excited to have a fun day of cycling and to see family and friends. That excitement was a bit dampened by the rainy weather. After a very wet and increasingly cold ride with two flat tires and brake problems, we finally made it to the Bean in Millenium Park. It was great seeing family and friends – definitely loved the surprise of seeing my cousins Clare and Maureen at the Bean – and great to be home. I was especially excited to shower at home and sleep in my own bed. I’ll have one more night at home then I’ll be back on the road, which will be a little bittersweet but I’m excited for what’s to come.

We’ve reached just past the quarter point and I’m already starting to understand what makes Illini 4000 such a unique organization and experience. I can’t quite put it into words yet but I’m sure I’ll figure out how to say it soon enough.

While home, I’ve been trying to get some little errands and such done so I can roll out of Chicago tomorrow morning with confidence. The Enterprise was brought into a local bike shop for a 1,500 mile tune up and is looking as shiny and clean as the day I got it. We are now ready for the next 3,000 miles of adventure.

Comments (1)
  • David Watkins says:

    The reality of what you are doing is sinking in for me. Up until now you have been pedaling toward us in Chicago and a mini, though brief, reunion. Now you are headed away from us and I feel that. Deeply. I know you are excited and you have a terrific group of fellow riders and a great cause to help you crank out the miles. Just know that you are embedded deep in my heart and that I continue to ride with you.

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