Day 66: Blizzards for Days

Today Zach dedicated the ride today in honor of former ride leader, Catherine Kemp. Catherine’s friend Shae, passed away 5 years ago today from Hodgkin’s Lymphoma.

Today was one of the best rides we have had in a while. There was a slight tailwind for the whole 75 miles, great sunny weather, nice views of vineyards with hills in the background, and the best van driver, Rebecca, who generously supplied us with apples at the first rest stop.

Since today is July 25 it is officially i4Christmas!…Except we had to postpone it. This is an annual tradition where riders gift each other things that they have found on the side of the road along with another more personalized gift that they spend a maximum of $5 on. Since this team just can’t seem to get our sh*t together on pretty much anything, we had to postpone it since none of us felt that we had enough notice to get good enough finds.

Since today is Phil’s birthday his dad kindly got Dairy Queen to donate the team blizzards. Some of us wiser riders took advantage of the any size fine print and balled out on a large.

We visited the University of Oregon campus where we had a donated pizza and cake dinner at their student union, organized by Zach’s sister.  After dinner we had time to explore campus and avid runner Arturo had the chance to do a lap on the campus’ famous track.  Although their union is much more modern than U of I campus, with much better restaurants, overall the campus was not as ‘green’ as I expected.

Now that we are this far along in the ride our relationship as teammates has evolved from being really good friends to practically siblings. We engage in playful arguments about just about everything from whether the peanut butter is better served with a spoon or knife or who gets to sit where when we shuttle a group of 26 of us in our 15 passenger van, to who gets the couch at the stayover (usually Kevin).

At this point in the ride we are entering single digits of days left, as of tomorrow. I had a conversation with Micheline today and I compare my feelings towards the trip ending to being similar to graduating. While it is very bittersweet to be leaving this amazing group of people and having fun filled days and laughs every day, the days are growing harder and my legs are starting to give out.

Not looking forward to 6,000 feet of climbing tomorrow.




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