Saturday, August 04, 2007

Wacky Vacation Story!

I saw this contest via Bezzie's blog - so, having just returned from what I might classify as a "wacky" vacation; Here is my entry:

DH and I just returned from a two-and-a-half week trip to the Fabulousy Hot and Humid state known as IOWA. We are originally from the Hawkeye State and are proud of our heritage. Part of this heritage includes the practically required, issued with your birth certificate, participation in the state-wide bicycle extravaganza known as RAGBRAI (tm). (pronounced "rag - bry") That would be the acronym for: the Register's Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa. (The Register is the Des Moines, Iowa, newspaper The Des Moines Register). I would suggest, a very decent newspaper.

So wacky tales ensue: RAGBRAI is a rolling party starting on the western edge of the state and crossing in a determined path to the east end of the state. The idea is to dip your rear wheel in the river on the west and then the front wheel on the east side. Typical mileage is 475 miles in 7 days. It can vary between 450 and over 500 miles, this year, mercifully, we only had to pedal 477 miles.

Pedaling attached to the back of your husband makes the ride a figurative breeze. Riding tandem is an excellent way to blow by the others. We average close to 20 miles/hour with twice the pedal power. We are fast and efficient and people like to follow us. That's called drafting, and drafting is dangerous. We were headed through a particulary dangerous stretch of cracked pavement - I turned around to the hanger-on and suggested she not knock me over, as I do work for a lawyer. I work for an estate planning attorney, that does not litigate. An empty threat, but it worked, she dropped off the draft. Good plan.

Just doing the ride itself is not wacky, the truly wacky part of this vacation, is that we subjected ourselves, with full knowledge, that the weather would be hot, humid and practically unbearable. Bodies that are temparately inclined, DO NOT adjust easily to temp's in the mid-90's with about 1000% humidity. Have you ever just stood, breathing, and sweated? No exertion required? Yah, well, I have. Many times over. And to put the wacky cherry on the wacky sundae, well, this was my 5th go round of the ride. DH has now chalked up 11.

You meet crazy folks, and they do silly things. One day they ride in loincloths. Another they might ride in the buff. A person might even spot Lance riding along with the pack. Nothing more wacky than that? Unless, of course, you count the wild dichotomy of bikes riding along the road with Amish horse-drawn carriages.

That, my friends, is a brief run-down of what I did with about 15,000 of my closest bicycling pals!


Calling on Kahlo said...

What a great story! That most be a funny image of people pedaling in loin cloths and along horse carriages? Too funny. I give you credit it for doing that in that humidity. My exercise in humidity extends to to adjusting the air conditioning ;)

Calling on Kahlo said...

BTW, thanks for participating in the contest!