I planned to ride to Port Stanley with my husband today. It was to be my first long ride of the season. Riding 120 km is a stretch from my usual 20 km to work and back. I was looking forward to the challenge. I was prepared to suffer. That's what cyclists do.
Our printer stopped working, so my husband drew a map. By the time we set off, it was almost noon. It was cool and comfortable for riding. The clouds were dark and threatening rain, yet the forecast looked good.
It felt great to be riding my lightweight carbon fiber Louis Garneau - a nice change from my Costco 'clunker' commuter bike - until something felt strange after riding up a hill. My handlebars were pointing a bit to the left. I mentioned this to my husband. He suggested we stop and fix it.
Unfortunately my Thomson handlebar stem was broken - visibly cracked right down the side. It could not be fixed. Since we were only 8.5 km from home, my husband rode back for the car. With a cracked stem, I opted to walk while I waited.
Eventually, my husband returned with both my backup road bike and his bike. We could drive a little further, park and ride the rest of the way. It was a good plan. We could fit in a long ride after all.
But then it started to rain. It rained a lot. It rained all the way to Port Stanley. Thank goodness we were driving.
We drove to Port Stanley where we walked around in cycling gear looking like proper cyclists. We had lattes, visited cute little boutiques, and bought fresh pickerel for dinner. Our spending was limited to $40 cash. My husband forgot to pick up his wallet when he rode back for the car. Maybe that was a good thing.
Although our Long Ride Attempt failed this time, I am grateful my broken stem didn't cause a crash as further inspection exposed a crack on the bottom too. Let's hope we have better luck next time.
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