When I was a kid there was a TV show named Romper Room, and at the end of the show the host would look through this Magic Mirror geegaw and she'd say, "I see Mary and I see Becky and I see Billy and I see Robin" and on and on,
and like a schmuck I'd sit there, entranced, hoping that someday she'd see me! Today's ride kind of felt like Romper Room because I got to see so many people.
I got to see Janie, who I don't see enough. I got to see Monica of Black Girls Do Bike for the first time, which was just awesome. I saw the guy who rides around with the Parrot on his handlebars, who I haven't seen for like two years.
I saw Yale, who really doesn't mind telling open-ended narratives while climbing and who has 8500 miles so far this year. I saw Colleen riding HiViz Fizz. Saw SaraQ's son and then later saw Herself.
Got to see RandyLand and what looks like the update of the NorthSide map. I love RandyLand. In Bloomfield, I got to see Bumper Bike for the first time. Saw Paul-H, Paul-B, and Jon-W on the course, and Mikhael who was volunteering.
Coming out of Highland Park we stopped at Tazza D'Oro for caffeine and scones, which was possibly more effective than Gatorade. The snacks at the rest stops were excellent, including this chocolate-peanutbutter concoction they had on hand.
Minor, minor points: On the north side, the signage entering River Ave was ambiguous. On the SouthSide, the sign at Mallorca told the 62mile riders to go out EastCarson but the road markings told the 62 milers to go inland (which was the correct route). It was possibly, with hindsight, suboptimal to route through the street with the Italian Festival in Bloomfield.
I managed to demonstrate both bad bike-handling skills and terrible behavior by hitting a car and then giving the driver a hard time about it. I feel bad about that and I've apologized to the driver, who was very gracious and above-board. I would like to stop relearning: angry doesn't really improve anything.