Day 41 – July 28, 2001

Carpinteria State Beach, CA to Huntington Beach, CA

126.73 Miles
14.88 Average Speed
8:30:46 Ride Time
7:00 am Departure
7:30 pm Arrival
2630.89 Total Trek Miles

Our longest day had to crop up sometime, so here it is.  Enjoy: 

                A splendid night with friends is one of the best things to do to prepare for an extremely long day.  Another “best thing” is to also have friends at your destination.  Both put a spring in your pedals that an empty hotel room just can’t provoke.

                 Our plan was first of all to ride to Santa Monica to eat lunch with our friend Dan Peers.  That’s about a seventy-five mile ride so an early start was imperative.  This achieved, we rode steadily on flat roads and with favorable winds.  At Malibu, our maps instructed us to use a bike path that wound rather ineffectually along the beach.  The view was nice for five young men, but I won’t say more.  We were witnesses to an “accident” involving a little boy and a middle-aged female roller-blader.  I say “accident” because that was what the roller-blader was calling it when we passed the scene in explanation to who I think was a parent of the boy.  I must say, however, that as an eye-witness wary of perjury, it would be difficult for me to support the accident claim on the part of the boy because, from my viewpoint, it seemed quite intentional.  His launch was so well-timed and his trajectory so accurately executed, that to call it merely an accident would be to ignore some hard evidence.  Nevertheless, both parties recovered fully.

                 That bike path directed us to the pier where we were to meet Dan Peers (you can imagine how many times we made the Pier-Peers joke).  It was certainly nice to see him and if our lycra outfits discouraged him to feel likewise, he didn’t let on about it.

                 That quick pasta lunch returned us with energy to the road.  Our sights were now set on Huntington Beach where B-Rock and Burke were to be our hosts.  Again the flat terrain and the tail winds sped our traveling as only they can.  While we’re riding, many time people will blurt out a comment related to our passing.  None of the comments so far have been worth the bytes to mention here until today.  The setting to the comment is important, but even then I’m not sure if anything but the actual experience can capture its brilliance.  We were riding through a low-income area of Long Beach.  We were following directions our maps were giving us and they took us to the residential section of that area.  Since we were trying to make sure we didn't go the wrong way, we were rolling down the roads at a slow pace.  We passed a block on which stood a man smoking in the company of two others, one sitting on concrete steps and the other squatting on his heels.  Our passing won a look from the group.  It was our tight lycra clothing, or maybe it was our bikes loaded to the gunwales, but whatever it was the smoking man, after a studied look our way, turned to his company and said, “Boy, our neighborhood sho is changin’.”  Brilliant. 

                We made it to Huntington by a reasonable hour and without a significant hang-up.  Brock and Burke greeted us with smiles and words of praise and after some showers we went out to eat with some girls they knew.  What a wonderful moment that was.


  day 42