It's Patriot's Day (and Marathon Day) here in Massachusetts... This means a sizable number of Massachusetts workers had the day off.
I, however, went in, worked the morning, then taught my group exercise class. Only one person showed!
My late-afternoon meeting got canceled, so I slipped out around then to get a training ride in. I felt lucky to be taking advantage of this ideal, early-spring day:
There's a ride out of Waltham, that I love, that I had to stop doing long ago because of serious workday traffic gridlock and when-will-it-ever-be-done bridge-repair detours. Since I knew traffic would be very mild and the bridge repairs completed, I programmed the route and pedaled out from the former Polaroid parking lot with placidity (details here: Memory Lane Monday Ride)
The first time I ever did this route was 27 years ago this month with Jane Critchlow. We bought the book Short Bike Rides in Greater Boston and Central Massachusetts by Howard Stone and thought a 14-mile ride was anything but short. We had to work up to the 25-mile version of the ride. Pre-GPS, we needed to refer to the bulky book for navigation (hated it).
I'm guessing Stone hand-drew his maps back then:
Stone's promo photo for the entry is of two very-eighties-looking riders in old Sudbury center moseying along, back when it was so much quieter:
Discovering some of Boston's best, western-suburbs bicycling routes was a magical time for me. Jane was equally as enthusiastic about the back roads pedaling experience, so those memories of our enhanced weekends are warm and pleasing.
I kept a journal back then and said this of the ride, "The new territory was welcomed. Bird sanctuaries, golf courses, and cheerful back roads with golden retrievers engulfed us. We stopped on a very convenient log to consume rice-bread-cashew-and-jellies. Time was of the essence; we returned late and raced home feeling grateful to have experienced more of the most scenic and often undiscovered terrain in Massachusetts."
To compare today's experience to 1991, well, there's so much more traffic. Yet, it still was gladdening to revisit one of the germination sources of a true athletic passion in my life...
Meanwhile, I am 72% to my fundraising goal -- I have $1,380 more to raise with only 48 days left! (If you are still looking to make a donation to my effort, please click here to do so: https://goo.gl/Dulnjk)
And so my dear friends, I close with a rare photo of our bikes we had back then, back when I didn't know how to spell Esmeralda... My Specialized Epic Allez and Jane's Trek 1100: