Sitting on the flight back to Portland from Philadelphia. This is the worst one yet. While waiting to board I avoided getting in line behind one of the “Others” from LOST. Complete with apparently crazy glue on beard, cut off blue jean short-shorts (a la Tobias Funke) and wild vacant look in his eyes. Yes, of course, I got to sit in between him and a rather sweaty man.
Pete and I showed up to Philadelphia last Thursday afternoon and drove directly down to my mom’s wake in Newark Delaware. I don’t really have much to say about it all. It was really hard, I am glad Pete came. We did not stay long, I did not feel like talking to anybody. I cannot explain the feeling.
We stayed at Tom McDaniel’s house in Wilmington Thursday night and went out to dinner at the same restaurant I took my mom out to last year when I came to race Granogue and visit her. We woke up Friday morning and went to the funeral, again in Newark. I spent some time hanging out at my mom’s house with my sister and nieces and nephews that afternoon, went into Newark proper and bought some trashy Delaware memorabilia, I’m not planning on going back too soon. How do you deal with this kind of thing? My mom and I were pretty close, she considered me a confidant and the last couple of years and she had been struggling with a lot of health and emotional issues the last few years.
Friday night at Tom’s everyone started arriving, Tonkin and Gary the Maxxis team mechanic were splitting the airport duties, shuttling people back and forth between Tom’s and Philadelphia. (PS: Pete and I rented a nasty white SUV, Eric got a sweet PT Cruiser. On request obviously.) Tom’s was a beehive of activity Friday night with race prep and registration work all night long. He put Pete to work on some reg stuff, I rode out and checked out the course.
I’m eating a peanut butter sandwich I made for the flight, it is all dried out like they would get when we were in middle school, y’know after sitting for 5 hours in your lunchbox?
When I got back, Geoff Kabush, Adam Mcgrath, Melissa Thomas and, Chris Mcgovern had arrived at the house. Eric busted out a bag of chocolate chips and took a shot at making vegan cookies for me. It was pretty sweet, he kinda grumbled about it, like he was not totally sure what he was doing making vegan cookies yet dove right in like a master. He did not seem totally pleased, “needs more flour” so we skipped baking them and just ate the dough.
Pete and I then shuffled off to Ethan Townsend’s sweet little farmhouse, Tom’s was crowded and we had our own room at the farm. Saturday morning was amazing, the sun came out and woke us up around 9am. I rolled out of bed in my new Delaware short shorts and made Pete some coffee and toast. We sat out on the porch in the beautiful autumn sun and enjoyed the coffee and each other’s company. (ps: I am chasing the mullet, not the man.)
My race report for the Granogue race is pretty short. I had a decent start, avoided a crash and a bike flying through the air, lost my focus for a few laps and then got it all back together to finish in 16th place, 1 position out of the UCI points. I did not have my head on straight, I felt the same at the Cross Crusade the weekend before too. I’ve got a lot on my mind. I am happy with the race but, not with the result, I’m riding better than 16th.
PS: the racing is so much deeper this year than last. The Granogue race was only a few pros shy of one of the USGP races. Everyone in the top 20 is super, super talented. So, I am pretty pumped to be riding a lot better and than last year. I’m just picking up steam too…