(Sterling Pond, Smugglers Notch, Vermont)
Vacation season is upon us and June is usually the busiest month of the year for me. Between vacation and an extra workload riding my bike slips quickly down the list of priorities.
I spent a lovely weekend in Chautauqua, NY with my dad and brother at the Cherokee Lodge. A secret “invite only” society of people whose only link is that they know the guy named Chester who owns the place. We usually spend the weekend alternating between sitting around and drinking and eating and drinking. Somewhere in there I remembered to bring my bike. I got in a nice 40-mile loop around Lake Chautauqua before anyone got up to offer me a beer. I stopped in the drive through at the Starbucks in Jamestown on my bike and as I ordered my doppio, the barista told me this was a, “Starbucks First” for her. Well, you’re welcome.
That was my last ride for twenty days. Can you say withdrawal?
My family (all six of us) drove (?!?) to Vermont for our next vacation. A week spent in the home of Cabot Cheese, maple syrup, hippies and Ben and Jerry’s. The last two were redundant, I know. We stayed at the resort founded on the spot where JFK’s father Joe made his fortune running bootlegged rum into Canada. Stay classy New England. The bad news was I didn’t bring my bike. We did however stay active climbing mountains and going on the Ben and Jerry’s Factory tour.
(1, 2, 3 ICE CREAM!!)
Back into town for a week on my feet covering the nation’s largest invention expo: INPEX. I had no time for rides after logging close to 14 miles a day on my feet traversing the Monroeville Convention center 12-hours a day carrying 15 pounds of camera gear. I did meet the Shamwow guy though.
(Me and Vince Offer of Shamwow fame)
Fast-forward to last night. It was my first race in three weeks. I crammed two punishing training rides over the weekend but I was very nervous about jumping in so unprepared. I got 14th place and was surprised by my top-end speed for the final sprint. I came in second place among guys with hairy legs, by the way. I’ll call it a positive.
My advice for this season of vacation: Take you bike with you. If you can’t then, don’t spend your WHOLE time eating ice cream, Cabot cheese and drinking beer.