Sunday, October 3, 2010

We're off . . . the Golden State Challenge has begun

Pre-ride post .  .  .

The 2008 and 2009 Ride 2 Recovery (R2R) Golden State Challenges started at the San Francisco VA Medical Center, but we'll depart from the Holiday Inn near the San Francisco International Airport this year.  There's a lot of construction around the hospital and that may be the reason, but don't quote me.

I received a call about 20 minutes before I was leaving to go to register and attend the pre-ride meeting and kickoff dinner.  They had rooms for all the participants.  We could go there and not have to get up as early the day of the ride.  My two friends, one participating in the ride and the other volunteering, wanted to take advantage of being there the night before so we wouldn't have to rush back to Alameda after dinner and get up so early.  In less than an hour I packed.  First thing, in my luggage was my computer.  I needed to get to this blog because I hadn't finished it and it was automatically set up to publish.  

I should have printed my packing list before I put my computer in my luggage. Anyway, I left without some very important undergarments and my pajamas.  Well, at least I didn't forget my bike.  My friends would have noticed that I'm sure.  When we get to Santa Cruz I definitely need to find a store.

The majority of the participants on this ride are new to this ride and/or cycling.  I learned my roommate is cycling for the first time in 5 years.  I also noticed I'll have the wimpiest bike on the ride.  ;-) My dream bike is now the TREK Madone. 

Oh, by the way, I had the honor of meeting Jim  Penseyres.  Today is his birthday and we sang Happy Birthday to him and another person involved with the American Legion.  Jim is very involved with the Ride 2 Recovery; he's a Vietnam Veteran and a Purple Heart recipient.  He lost part of his leg to a landmine in Vietnam.  What an awesome role model for the men and women living with disabilities from combat in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Jim and his brother Pete Penseyres, set the Race Across AMerica (RAAM) record for the four-person Human Powered Vehicle.  That record still stands

I'll try to comment on how the ride is going was when I get to Santa Cruz, but no promises.  Until you hear from me again, you know I'm honored to be TREKkin' Highway 1 to Los Angeles with the men and women serving this great nation and the men and women who are supporting them in this awesome rehabilitation and fundraising ride.


AKA Deborah Palmer

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