Sunday, March 15, 2009


I have been road riding for 45 years now. I have toured, raced, ridden centuries just about everything one can do on the road. Road riding can be a social activity. If you go out in a group, stay as a group and finish together. It can also be a very frustrating experience. Riding with my friends from Scotland is the best. In Mallorca most riders ride side by side. We take turns leading and your riding partner changes from time to time. If there are stronger riders they will be up front for most of the ride. They will wait on the top of the hills, make sure the weaker riders are not dropped in the wind etc. The ride is not done when the ride is over. We then have to out and have a beer or coffee. 
Besides Kevin this year, we had Vicky Kevin's girlfriend. Two years ago she was just starting out as a bike rider, now she is a seasoned pro. They are both planning a trip to Bend this fall.
We have Pete, Ali, Ione and Eifa. This is the furthest away Sunnyside family as all have bikes from Sunnyside Sports. Pete actually designs mountain bike trails for a living. 
Steven, who is English but whose parents live in the Borders, actually works at the place of his dreams. When I first met him he was still at University. He told me he wanted to design race cars and he works for Lola designing race cars.  Doctor Neal is a very strong young rider who does molecular research at Leeds University. Makes for great conversation. Mike is a graphic artist who just started to ride bikes a few years ago. He from Yorkshire where they have some amazingly steep hills. Ben and Elaine are from north of Edinburgh who are outdoor enthusiasts. Both have been riding bikes for a long time ( I met them in Mallorca 5 years ago). They are also hill walkers (Ben has been to the top of all 294 (plus or minus) Munros in Scotland. A Munro is any mountain over 3000 feet. Though that doesn't seem like a lot to us Oregonians, getting up a Munro from Sea Level is no mean feat. Paul and Anne also live in the Borders. Paul is a triathlete who also love to road ride and mountain bike. In fact I met him a couple of years ago on a night mountain bike ride in Selkirk. Anne is just discovering road riding and had a great time exploring Mallorca. Rhoda, who lives in the Borders and is from the highlands of Scotland was a joy to ride with. She was seeing Mallorca for the first time. Riding with her was like seeing Mallorca for the first time. Her laugh and smile were infectious. 
I am returning home tomorrow which will be great. I miss my sweetheart, my kitties and a nice warm fire. I am looking forward to going into Sunnyside and seeing all my friends. They will want to know how my trip went. But I will also mill my second home, the Borders of Scotland and all the friends that make it so. I hope they will all come over to Bend so I can show them some awesome mountain biking, mountains taller than their Munros, and some Bend hospitality. 
Take care.


Li'l Ned said...

Your photo and descriptions of everyone made me very homesick for Scotland and our friends there. The picture gets the beauty of Scotland -- the light, the landscape, the hills, the dykes (Scots for dry stone walls)-- exactly right. Thanks for posting it, and I'm looking forward to seeing you at home!
Your wee wifey

Gravity Girl said...

Welcome home to Bend, Don. Enjoy the remnants of winter! Linda