Monday, September 14, 2015

Bikes and Rain El Norte

I volunteered for Cascade this Sunday and Seattle proved to be true to form. While Saturday was beautiful and sunny, Sunday not so much so. I arrived a little late due to a combo of reading the start time wrong and being lame for doing so. First time volunteering and being late. Awesome.

When I told my coworker last week that I was volunteering for Cascade, she responded by staring at me. Eventually she asked me why. I told her it felt great giving back. She kept staring at me so I finally admitted that by putting in 24 hours of volunteering, I would get a free race next year. "There's the Bike Chick I know", she responded. What can I say, I might not be as convincingly altruistic as I think I am.

I figured I'd bike to the brewery I was to (wo)man the bike racks at. The weather forecast said 20% chance of rain. Just to be safer rather than sorry, I put on my goretex waterproof shoes and my wool socks so my feet wouldn't spend a day cold and wet. What I hadn't factored in was that without a front fender and being gaiter less, I was giving water plenty of opportunities to get into my shoes and zero chance of getting out.

Great invention - if only I had these

20% of rain, my ass. It was already misty as I rolled out from home. By the time I reached Lake Sammamish, it was pouring down buckets. My poor feet were soaking wet within minutes. I guess I can put "not a great planner" on my list of qualities. Well, I had no time to spend worrying about wet feet as I was already late. I biked as fast as I could, averaging 18 miles/hr. One hour into my 22 mile ride to my destination, I was already late so I pulled over and called my contact. She told me not to worry. I arrived 15 minutes late.

A couple of people were already putting together the bike racks, so I joined them. I got my volunteer shirt, which was extremely orange. If I ever want to volunteer as a traffic cone, I've got the shirt for it now.

Since the weather was pretty shitty by now, I didn't think turnout would be high. I was wrong. Not sure if it's people's craving for beer, or collective suffering, but showed up they did - in droves. I attempted to be the missing sunshine by thanking people for showing up and smiling. Both things I try to leave at work. Smiling makes my face hurt.

The people at Cascade offered up their van for us to sit in. And so we did. I spent most of my time doing my best hobo imitation and less like a child molester in the back of that van.

By 1:30, I was done volunteering. Hubby showed up and had a beer, then we headed back together in his car. I didn't feel like biking in my personal matching foot baths. Ah, Seattle, gotta love the rain.

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