Tuesday, May 28, 2013

In Which Some Wet Rides End With A Sudden “Chunk”

Noelridge Park on the way home. Puddle on the walk, misty air and cloudy sky, although it never did rain on the ride home.

I probably got a bit of a late start this morning. I knew I had to go into the office today, but was worried as the pavement was wet from overnight rain, and I didn’t want to get rained on again. So I kept checking the radar and delaying my departure, and it was around 10 by the time I finally left for work.

You guessed it. If I had left at 8:30 or 9, I would have arrived reasonably dry. But about 10:10, even before I was across the parking lots of Rockwell-Collins, rain began. It was light, but it wasn’t just a mist, either, it was rain, and I got fairly damp on the way in.

Oh well. It was only a light rain and I was only damp, not soaked.

After an afternoon registration session, I headed towards home via the trail around 3:30. I planned to do a bit of a bike ride, and headed south. But the sky clouded up and I was worried about a more vigorous repeat of the morning experience, so by Cedar Lake I turned around. As I rode north, I contemplated heading past Hiawatha, but although it did not rain, the sky kept looking ominous, and I turned towards home.

I decided I would cycle up Bowman Woods Hill, and then maybe ride around for a while close to home.

Two thirds of the way up the hill, however, there was a “chunk,” and my pedals started spinning as my bike slowed and started to back up. I had busted a link of my chain.

So I guess I was lucky that it clouded up and I didn’t head too far south, since that meant that I was within easy walking distance of home.

The bike shop guys say they’ll have Francis up and running by tomorrow, so it’s all OK. Apparently, I had banged the rear derailleur on something and damaged it a bit, which put stress on the chain. Anyway, I’ll get a new chain, and the derailleur can be repaired.

The broken chain.

Well, it was just one of two unexpected bike adventures in the previous two days. The one before had been more pleasant. I had a grandchild who is of cycling age, as in large enough to fit in the bike seat, who had never ridden. But, after seeing my granddaughter Amelia arrive on my bike at a park, this other grandchild decided to take a ride—and loved it. I’ve won another child over to biking.

Just hope the chain is fixed before that grandchild visits again. I think there are more rides coming.

Saw some blooming trees on the ride. Anybody know what they are? The top ones are full-size trees common on the Cedar River Trail. The bottom ones are among three planted in one yard in my neighborhood. Yes, it's true, I'm shopping for a new tree to plant ... given the wet, this seems like the  year for it.

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