Saturday, June 06, 2009

Labor Day Labor

While on my trip to UK, of the things that I had picked up were a pair of tail-lamps, a crank brothers hand pump, spiral cable coil lock and a high-viz vest. And all of this had joined my Firefox that had barely been tested.
Bangaloreans are lucky to have Nandi Hills at just the right biking distance in our backyard. The Bangalore Bikers Club rides out almost every weekend to Nandi and I planned to join a group of mountain bikers to ride to Nandi Hills and back – a distance of about 100km from Hebbal. I pulled out of that and decided instead to join Sriram (profiled here) to ride 2 loops from the Nandi turn-off point off the highway. With Sriram, it would mean a much faster pace. But since we were to start off the highway, it would mean I would do a shorter ride.
A 4:30am weekend
This is becoming a norm now, wake up at 4:30am on a weekend. What is unfortunately becoming increasing regular is how I have to wait for people to show up. I was about 10mins early and Sriram was about 30mins late.
We started at about 6:40 from the Nandi turn-off point (23k to Nandi) and rode together one loop of about 10k and back. Sriram took off then, the next thing I saw was as I was approaching the point where we had turned off, he was racing some motorcyclists and was overtaking a few of them. The guy’s a freak.
I continued on and was struggling up the slope, yet to reach the foot of the hill, but already low on cadence and in granny gears. It was then Ignatius Chen Chin Fa, aka Iggy, the Kannada-speaking-Chinese-guy passed me on this bike. I met the die-hard RFLers – Rishi, Amrita and team, they had finished one loop and were getting ready for one more.
I started the ride up the hill – 7k of hill riding, the last 3k pretty steep. I lost Iggy and his friend within the first km or so.
I kept pushing the pedals for about 4k. The pedal clips help a lot in the uphills. You can pull up with one leg and you push down with the other. I had to resort to a lot of walking, jogging in the last 2k and just made it ahead of the runners to the top. I would have to work hard and try and get to scale the hill in one go sometime soon.
Rode down and back to the car in good time. I joined the Rishi and others at the dhaba for breakfast. Lotsa labor on labor day, I should say!

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