10.12.2010

Last week's TGIF - Tandem Goodness It's Friday!

Late last week we got the call that our tandem bike had arrived at the shop and only required assembly and handlebar tape application. Friday the shop called to tell us that they had it ready. So I drove down to DH's work to trade cars, as his midsize sedan is not nearly as useful for hauling large objects as my smaller hatchback (we have a roof rack with a tandem rail on order for my car for future transportation of our new ride).

With Derek's car I picked-up our son and the little boy in our carpool from school, telling Dane only that daddy needed my car to go get something that wouldn't fit in his car.

When Derek returned home he parked over by our detached garage and snuck the bike into the garage for final assembly and presentation.

Once the bike was ready we brought Dane out with covered eyes for the official "unveiling" of the bike that was purchased primarily for his benefit.

Apparently our whole ruse was very successful.  As you can see his eyes bugged-out and there was an audible gasp.

On Saturday AM Dane attended an annual pumpkin roll with friends.  While he was away Derek and I enjoyed an inaugural ride on "Rule #2: Double-Tap" (silly reference from Zombieland).  Wow, that was both exhilarating and scary as hell.  I'm sure it's a lot less scary for the "captain," but riding as "stoker" behind a wall of person is pretty terrifying.  Not seeing anything in front of oneself while bombing down a hill at 35mph will raise anyone's heart-rate.  I also found that not being able to see bumps in the road was kinda rough on me, as I was unable to properly prepare and adjust my stance accordingly.  One bump knocked me off my saddle.  There is definitely a communication learning curve on a tandem.  One cannot simply coast as-needed to move around on the saddle or take a drink.  Everything has to be "discussed" with the other rider.

Ride #2 on Saturday afternoon found Dane in the stoker seat.  I swear, the kid took to it like it was the most natural thing ever.  He covered a total of 27 miles behind his dad while I rode along on my own bike.

And he was not slacking back there.  He and Derek dropped my ass with ease on a section of road with just the slightest decline.  Jerks!!!  On uphills they had no trouble keeping up with me--so not fair!  Once Dane has more experience they will really leave me in the dust. *sniff*  Guess I'm going to REALLY have to work my butt off if I want to not get dropped on every ride.  Those skinny legs on that boy are deceptive--there must be some serious muscle in there (kid comes by it from both sides of the gene pool).

His only complaint was that his butt hurt a little.  We have already ordered him a better pair of kids' cycling shorts with a real foam chamois paid, instead of the ones he has that have no more than a thin layer of fleece over the crotch seams.

On Sunday we did another ride with Dane on the back of the tandem.  This time we did almost 22 miles (and I still struggled a bit to not get dropped a few times).  I'm already looking forward to next Summer.  I foresee a LOT of long family rides (and maybe some family cyclocross races next Fall!).  We're pretty certain that Dane's first metric century ride will happen at the tender age of 10 if he continues to progress and adapt to riding.  It's so awesome to have a sport that we can share as a family, even if our abilities are all somewhat different.

3 comments:

  1. I think it's great that you can spend a day doing what you all enjoy together. Here's to many happy rides to come...

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  2. I think that would scare the crap out of me to be on the back seat! Must.be.in.control.

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  3. Ashley, I'm not a very good passenger in cars, either. I don't even like automatic transmission in cars (or traction control).

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