Monday, July 18, 2005

Blow out No. 2

Ride in brutal. Head wind from the South East, which is unusual in the mornings--its the Monsoon coming in from Mexico. I can live with that, except for it was almost 90 degrees and 40 percent humidity. I'm not complaining. That's what is to be expected commuting on the bike. Some days I feel like I'm flying and some days I feel that all the elements are against me. But there is hidden beauty in the heat and fire that is hard to explain.

On the River Bike Route, the little ground squirrls are rowdy, playful and fat. It must mean the weather will change. There is a slight smell of rain in the air.

Ride home good and I' moving along. At Ina and Thornydale, just through the light I began my climb up the hill, and then the few more miles to the car. WHAM! My front tire freakin' explodes! Holy shit but it was loud! Quick check of the tire--no holes. Time to quickly get into the shade and change the tube. Crap! My hand-pump is busted somehow. So I use my CO 2. But the tire doesn't set right on the wheel after I air up the new tube--there's a problem. With only one CO 2 cartrige, there's no way to try and re-set the tire and find out my mistake.

R and R bike shope is a few blocks behind me--not a place I like to stop because the service sucks--I walk over. The Wrench takes off the tire and discovers a bad tube. The replacement works and I pay for the tube and one extra. I'm off.

As I get within a few miles of the golf course where I'm parked, gentle rain plops around me, and then on me. It feels like cool spears or air shooting to the ground. I can feel that hot lazy air on the road and as I'm going through it. When the wind blows it away its cool because you can feel it roll and get pushed over.

Why are my tubes exploding? Stef says that the heat of the pavement is rising the pressure in the tubes and causing them to expand. I was skeptical at first but now I believe he's on to something. Maybe the tire on the Lemond had a weak spot and that's why the tube blew a hole in the tire. On the Raleigh, the tires held but the tube burst anyway. Maybe I'll need to run the air pressure a little lower on the ride home. Lucky for me I wasn't going 20 or 22 mph on River Road when the tires blew. With the wind, traffic, and speed--I could have had a bad day.

But I live to flog and ride yet another day, mes amis!

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