Once a year San Jose Bike Party
hosts Bike The Limits, a "self supported 100 mile bike ride". That
means that we start at San Jose City Hall at 8 AM, and then you're
on your own with a good route sheet
to do the ride.
Before the ride started we had to
get there. That involved waking up SUPER EARLY to catch the first
light rail train. It was so early that we just rolled out of bed,
put our clothes on and zoomed down to the station, barely getting
there in time to catch our train. We ate oatmeal we'd made the
previous evening on the train. Then we stopped at a coffee shop
for a pit stop before making it to the start in plenty of time to
be there for the group shot.
We started out by riding as a group
for a while. Then the traffic lights start breaking us into
smaller groups. For the first 20 miles or so I devoted all my
energies to keeping up with the riders ahead of me. Then after we
turned from Santa Teresa to Bailey I saw a porta-potty with no
lock by the side of the road and stopped to use it. Those ahead of
us were long gone by the time Virginia and I got going again, even
though we were only stopped for a couple of minutes.
Then about two thirds of the way up
Bailey I looked to my right and thought "That's a beautiful view.
Gotta take a picture!"
Bailey is a two lane road with not
much of a shoulder. The trees were constantly urging us to take
the lane, but I'd fight back when I heard a car coming behind me.
Fortunately there wasn't that much traffic.
By this time mostly it was just
Virginia and I. She had the route on her smart phone, and my paper
directions had flown away because I hadn't taped them to the
handlebars before we started rolling. She'd tell me the next turn
and I'd look for that name at every intersection. Maybe that
wasn't as fast as following the zoomers would have been, but we
kept moving forward and didn't make any mistakes. I heard later
that Luke had to ride eight extra miles because he missed a turn
and got lost.
After a bunch more miles Santiago,
Suraj, and Jonathan caught up with us. They must have stopped at
Callero Resevoir and let us pass them then or something like that.
Anyhow, we all stopped at Vasona Park to use the restrooms and
refill our water bottles. After that they zoomed off ahead again.
This time we didn't catch them again.
We stopped on Rainbow Drive in
Cupertino to eat peanut butter sandwiches. By that time I was
tired of carrying the camera and just wanted to keep moving
forward. I snapped a candid shot of Virginia catching up on others
from the event's facebook page. Then I put it away in my trunk.
She kept using her phone to take
more pictures every now and then. That's how we got this one of me
fixing her flat on Tasman.
To make a long story short, we were
the last ones to finish, setting a new record for slowest Bike The
Limits time. We finished at about 9:11 PM. We took those pictures
to prove we got there.