Flat

I’ve been riding a lot. The weather out here has been really nice, and there’s some great places to ride. Today I headed out in the afternoon to explore the farther reaches of the Galloping Goose Regional Trail. It takes you up out of town into the countryside for about 50 km, ending in Sooke. I usually ride about 20 km up and back, but I pushed a little further today, exploring. Sunday. The trail becomes quite remote, and instead of dodging other cyclists I was avoiding robins and even a wild hare, winding my way through the lovely Metchosin woods…

I decide to hit 30 km mark and maybe turn around. A pretty good ride. At 29 km my tire blows. Not a slow leak, but done. The sound of air quickly rushing out of the tire is…deflating. I haven’t seen anybody in about 15 minutes. And yet, the surroundings accompanying my dilemma are idyllic; Lovely fields with horses, woody glades, hidden little ponds and streams.

And so I rattled through the countryside on my rim for a couple of km (something you’re not supposed to do unless you like buying new rims!), gingerly trying not to put any weight on the deflated back tire. My snazzy ride had become a clanking, clunky hunk of junk…

I stopped in front of a farm — suspiciously eying up the livestock as I munched on some trail mix. I think about walking up to one of these random farms and seeing if they have bike stuff. But knocking on the door of a remote farmhouse seems too conveniently like the start of a bad horror flick. Besides, most people would probably be fairly unhelpful. Or worse, too helpful.

So, anyway, it’s back on the bike, chugging along in the boonies on a rim that I can hear getting dinged up by the rough gravel trail. The clouds looked a little menacing, and if it had started raining it would have been a party…

However, with the sun holding out, I made it to a “real” road. A road with a bike shop on it (which was called, appropriately enough, “The Bike Shop”). It was late, but fortunately the place was still open. The shop owner, kind and helpful, resurrected my rim and slapped on a new tire and tube.

The final (thankfully uneventful) 20 km into town I thought about how the whole ordeal was strangely fun. For most people a flat out in the bush is just a pain. And in some ways it was. But it was also the road less traveled, an unexpected detour, and a seemingly insurmountable problem solved fairly easily.

It didn’t hurt, of course, that coming home I had the wind at my back and it was all downhill…

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4 Responses to “Flat”

  1. Michael Says:

    I laughed out loud at the line about how “… knocking on the door of a remote farmhouse seems too conveniently like the start of a bad horror flick.” Nice.

    Any comments about the Mars thing?

  2. The Necromancer Says:

    Mars? Hmm…

  3. Stiletto Says:

    “But knocking on the door of a remote farmhouse seems too conveniently like the start of a bad horror flick. ”

    Hahaha.

    Well, you never know, my tall friend. My ex-husband’s car broke down right in front of a farmhouse somewhere in the Belgian countryside. We took a chance, knocked on the door, and were greeted a bit apprehensively by the head of the house until we pointed to the car. Well, for some reason, the Belgiques are fascinated with American muscle cars and we were used to encountering crazy Belgians honking at us and signaling for us to pull over so they could check out the wheels. This was no exception.

    [Not to mention my ex had a lingerie pic of me dangling on a chain and hanging from the rearview mirror.]

    The sight of the my ex’s Camaro titillated them to no avail…The whole family – man, woman, children – ran from the house to stroke the car; jumping inside, pushing various buttons, basically, all sorts of vehicle worship ensued.

    We were invited inside, drank beer, ate cheese, attempted to speak to each other in our respective native tongues…of course, the whole purpose was to use the phone and call for a tow…but we ended up with so much more.

    Who says those Frenchie speaking Belgians are so bad?

    Anyway, glad to know you’re back, safe and sound!

  4. The Necromancer Says:

    Most people don’t have the same reaction to bicycles, even fancy ones. Though you give me an idea for a very racy custom paint job…

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