“In the confrontation between the stream and the rock, the stream always wins. Not through strength, but through perseverance.”
Today started out cool and foggy for our CCC riders – with A LOT of uphill happening. The first climb out of camp in Big Sur was a 950 ft climb. At the top of that hill, what the riders could see was more hills -more ups and downs. One of the toughest points of today’s ride was what is known as Twin Peaks. Apparently many of the riders refer to it as “Twin B…” – well, let’s just say that it’s a euphemism that is used to refer to a woman in a not so positive light. Or a mother dog, take your pick.
Before he started this tour, when we had no idea what to expect – we imagined Dave stopping under a cypress tree along the route to take a nap. He’s a notoriously quick napper – rarely more than 30 minutes and usually clocking in at 20. But he says that it’s not working that way. He pushes to get to the top of the hill, and filled with both the elation at having emerged victorious over the climb and the expectation of upcoming obstacles – he simply cannot sleep. He keeps telling himself – just do one more and see what’s there… and before he knows it, he’s cycling into camp.
This is the camp at San Simeon… which is actually a park at the beach. I questioned where the showers are at such a location – and Dave mentioned something called an “Executive Shower Trailer” which might look something like this:
He said there is plenty of hot water… and it feels great at the end of the day’s ride.
Caitlin was the honoree of today’s leg. Every day there is a youth honoree on the DRG (daily route guide) the riders are given. Several people came up to Dave today to chat and learn more about our story. I so wish we could have been there! But frankly, I’m a bit of a hard-ass when it comes to school. JA kids miss so much school anyway due to appointments and bad pain days… I hate to have her behind a mere three weeks into school – but now, I am questioning and wishing I would have chosen differently. Sometimes, exceptions are necessary!
This is Dave with Stew Herrera of the PlayaPushers. We got to meet Stew when we did our Spotlight on the Community Interview at KLOS. Stew is a producer there and does all kinds of voice-overs, promos, and interviews. He’s a super-talented, mega-sweet guy… and (without any offense against my rockin’ hot husband,) he’s awfully darn cute. Stew is doing the ride with a bunch of pals from Playa Del Rey, a small gem of a beach community in So Cal (Dave and I actually used to live there.)
The riders have completed 244 miles, which is not quite half of the 525 total to be completed – but they are down four days out of eight. So, if you’ve been following along with the ride – by this point, you are probably thinking to yourself, “I could do that.” Dave says you can. absolutely – you can.
Self-doubt was something I watched him struggle with over the last few months. When you start to become aware of cycling, a whole new world and sub-culture materializes. There are cycle clubs, and special gear, and magazines and training programs. It can be very daunting when you get started. Simply riding for long distances on a 25 year old Schwinn, Dave assumed that somehow, he was not as prepared as the guys on the $4000 Cannondale bikes with the tricked out wear…. The CCC offers a tremendous training program, with opportunities to meet with coaches and other riders, and weekend training rides. But with three young kids, it just seemed that Dave could never make any of those. We asked questions online, and participated in a webinar… but mostly, his training was an independent study. And you never know how well you’ve studied until you take the test, right?
Now that he’s halfway through the test, Dave wishes he could start over again at Saturday… minus the doubt. This is not as hard as he anticipated… at all. He remembers climbing that first hill out of San Fransisco, and getting winded… and stopping. Not stopping to walk, or get in the SAG wagon… but just stopping to catch his breath and convince himself to get going again, with thoughts of “What the heck have I gotten myself into?” racing through his mind.
Now he knows that he can do these hills, do these climbs. He just needs to gear down and take it slow… but he can keep moving and make it. Now he knows that he can make it every day…and if he had the ability to go back and redo the course without the doubt, and with knowing what lies ahead – it would be a different thing. But, it’s a bit of a metaphor on life really – we have to gear down and keep moving, and force ourselves to stop and enjoy the moments, without the privilege of knowing what is around the next curve.
There already pretty firm conviction that this will be a tradition for our family. So, you could easily take this journey too.. no matter your age, or ability, or finances, or education. And certainly, Dave is hoping not to be the sole Princess on the Parade next year.. and hopes to welcome at least 5 people along for the incredible adventure. Tiaras provided off course 🙂
Today’s mission moment goes out to Laurie Miller – who is a remarkable young woman riding the CCC this year – as she has in two years past.
We met Laurie in Washington DC several years ago, where she was advocating for arthritis legislation. It was through Laurie that I learned first hand of the devastation visited upon young adults with arthritis – how it can affect your job opportunities, and pull you away from a normal social life. I’ve watched the roller coaster that RA has been for Laurie – and learned that when one path gets closed off, she always will find another. She is just started out graduate school at a very prestigious SoCal University. I know she finished a couple of heavy papers before she joined the tour, and I even heard a rumor that she has to travel back and forth at least once to be able to attend classes! She’s always an inspiration to us…. and I know she is providing lift and love to the riders as well. Rock on, Laurie!
To the ride- Wednesday is Day 5 – 60 miles to Pismo Beach. Sounds like a gorgeous day!