You can imagine how pleased I was when my boss tells me at 5pm that we will be getting picked up for work at 7 instead of 7:30am. Starting tomorrow.
When I checked on Strava.com for what time I got back from this group last ride, it was cutting it a bit fine. I also noticed that I had left the hotel at 4:33 and spent 9 minutes waiting at “The Longhouse” for the ride to start. So I could probably leave at 4:40 and still make it. (can you see what is coming?) I did a bit of route planning and measuring with ridewithgps.com. Decided that I would join the group for the first little while, then cut the ride short and push myself heading home on my own through Bukit Timah.
Now, anyone who knows me, works with me, or rides with me, knows that I am late, or ‘just’ make it, more often than I am early. I was up at 4 and slowly waking up. “Plenty of time” I thought to myself. What a great feeling that is. Have a quick look around on the interwebs….
I can’t recall the exact time I realised “Shit! I won’t be rolling before 440 now”, but I really do enjoy the time between thinking “I have lots of time” and “I’m gunna be late”.
Skip ahead 20 minutes or so, and I arrived at the Longhouse at 2 minutes past 5. No one there.
“Oh well, time for some TT work”. Only a few minutes later, I see a bunch of blinking red lights in the distance, and I caught them as they rolled away from a traffic light. Time to sit up and stick my gloves on, as I’d left them in my pocket when leaving the hotel. I was thinking they were not going as hard as last week, when a guy, a few bikes ahead, pulled out to the right and rolled to the front and away, I looked down, we were doing just 28km/hr. Damn! This must be a slower group. So I slipped out to the right and proceeded to see if I could catch the other guy, who, by now was 50m or so up the road. It took 2 km to bridge, so I knew we must have been pretty well matched, or he was taking it easy. I rolled through after a short breather on his wheel.
Wordlessly, we began to swap turns, smooth and even. It was magic. I’m only guessing about him, but judging by the lengths of turns and the body language toward the end of each turn, we were both pushing along at the upper end of the comfort zone.
As we turned left onto Woodlands rd we had a few quick “thanks for that”s. I found out-
· He was also late for the faster 5am group
· He was from Vermont
· He normally took this shorter route home
· He has been here for just over 2 years
Never found out his name, but we then wound it up again, till we came to a group just before Dunearn road who jumped on our wheels, but none of them could do a turn. Great stuff.
If these early starts continue, then I’ll be seeing him in 3 weeks, when I get back to Singapore next time.
Now if only I could get some of the local riders to roll turns…..
Days like this I love riding a bike, even more……