We’re on our way from Grenoble to Paris after two remarkable days spent with friends and surrounded by bicis. Yesterday and today marked Le Tour de France’s 40th appearance in Grenoble. Leading up to this weekend, there was a brilliant buzz all about.
Maybe it was internal, fueled by memories of riding of Transmountain in El Paso and speeding down the other side, topping speeds of over 50 miles per hour while listening to Jonsi and screaming in delight- all just to see what it felt like. Maybe it’s fueled by the memories up cramming in century after sweaty century during the extreme desert’s summer off from teaching- making up the final miles as we counted up to 100 by racing up and down parking ramps and side streets. Or those memories of crossing over the international boundaries into Juarez for Critical Mass or Sunday morning brunches.
Wherever the excitement came from, it was built up largely in part by those and so many more biking experiences. Truly, the best memories come from the friendships, teamwork, and pure delight that accompanied each ride. That’s what is so great about cycling: to so many it appears to be an individual activity, but it truly is a team sport. There are falls, there are flats, there is rain, and there is hot hot heat. Those things are inconsistent in timing, but reliable in occurrence.
The people that are there to help you up the mountain and teach you about their passion for no other reason but to spread joy- those are the consistently reliable perks that cycling is all about.
This is where the Tour’s thrills stemmed from: Knowing that each of those riders has been touched by indescribable magic of two wheels and a supportive friend nearby.
The anticipation’s fuel was set ablaze by Friday’s mountain tour BBQ with family and friends as well as Saturday’s Stage 14 departure. As all the timing gods worked their magic, our party of two turned into a party of six as the most darling synchronized swimmer that I had the pleasure of coaching in Boulder and her family cheered at the race’s start right alongside us.
Check out the video that Camille’s dad took from our great site spot: