an evening with the scurrs

Shari and I have been trying to plan a ride together since the spring.  We’ve made a few attempts to meet at Pontiac Lake, but either weather, illness or just plain chaos has gotten in the way.  Tonight however, the planets aligned.  The weather was perfect, we were all in good health, traffic was good, last minute bike maintenance issues were taken care of and we made it to PLRA 10 minutes before we said we’d be there!

I’ve been having hand, wrist and arm pains lately after riding my SS.  I was really starting to think that the handlebar I’d fallen in love with at the ILRA bike demo, spent a ridiculous amount of money on, might not be working out for me.  I was getting very discouraged.  For some reason, it occurred to me to take off my Cane Creek grips and put on the Ergon grips that I’d originally had (and quickly removed from) on my Cannondale just as I converted it to a SS.  I thought they got in the way and I just didn’t think they’d be good on a SS.

Well, I decided to give them another shot now that I’m more used to the Ergons (have a pair on my Titus and LOVE them) and also more used to the SS they were worth another shot.  My hands and wrists hurt so badly after riding at the Tree Farm on Tuesday that I couldn’t think about riding the SS again until I made a change.

So, first thing I did when I got home from work today was swap out those grips.  I also moved the position of my brake levers when I noticed that they were pointing way too far down to the ground.  First thing Nick did when he got home from work was change his rear brake pads and was doing the final adjustments when I rolled in.  We packed up the jeep and made our way to Pontiac.

As soon as I hopped on my bike and put my hands on my Ergon grips, I remembered that the demo bike I rode when I fell in love with the handlebar had Ergon grips.  I remembered exactly the reason why I ran right out and spent an embarrassing amount of money on that Ritchey Carbon LowRizer handlebar.  Tonight, I decided that the Ritchey Carbon LowRizer handlebar was worth every penny.  Wow.  What a difference.  And having those little bitty bar ends was sooo much nicer for climbing.  And I climbed (instead of walked) a whole bunch more tonight than I did last time we rode PLRA (a couple of weeks ago, my first ever SS PLRA ride)! 

And, riding with Shari is so much fun.  We just ride and chat and ride and chat.  And she’s a hellova rider – I could hardly keep up with her on the downhills (and I think she inspired me to be less cautious, and so I had a ton more momentum which made the whole thing so much more fun!).  And Robin keeps such a good pace that I never really fell too far behind.   I was jumping off the drops instead of rolling off of them, and I think I even yelled “woo hoo” once or twice.  The weather was amazing.  It was like 80 degrees and no humidity.  Sunny, breezy, just a beautiful night to be outside.

And then we topped off the evening with dinner at El Patio.  Mmmmmmmmmmm.  Good times 😀

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