I was up at 5 am as predicted, dang. But with the sun slowly coming up, i managed to get out of my cocoon at 6 and start on the b’fast. We had a sort of a big day today as we were on a schedule to get to San Diego. Krissi has a host in town and she was about 10 miles away from where I was staying. I have an old buddy, Joon Leng, who kindly offered his couch and I am heading to his place.
First off, we start the day riding the bit of route we double backed yesterday. In all, we have ridden across the nuclear plant 3 times and I feel a bit of an additional strength in my legs :-p
The bike route soon ended though and we rode into the Army base of Camp Pendleton. No offence to people who serve in the Armed Forces, but it always seems that the people in Military feel a bit Gung Ho about themselves. Mostly I reckon its the amount of conditioning (I’d say brainwashing) that happens during the training. I can’t blame the individuals, but the system that traps a lot of young people in its fold.
Anyway the sentries were young lads who were pretty friendly and as we rode thro the base, we came across a lot of others who seemed to be heading to important meetings, reminded me of George.The route looped thro the base and I was having a bit of a chore jumping gears to avoid the pretty worn out middle ring. We eventually got out and stopped at a harbour for lunch. The Burrito was fantastic to say the least.
On the way out, we rode thro some pretty towns and I was on the lookout for a bike shop, may be i’d get lucky. Turned out the first shop didn’t have what I needed but he pointed me to more shops along the way. I felt like it might be a big expense if I can’t find the ring and had to buy the entire crank, hopefully not.
A little while down the road, I found another bike shop which, as luck would have it, had a chain ring, that was used once and the mechanic was willing to give a 20% discount on it.
The only catch was it was a 34 Teeth ring instead of the 36 I had earlier. I figured a couple of Teeth was not that big a deal and borrowed some tools and fixed it up on the spot. Another skill learnt! Yay!
It was a pleasure to be back on the Middle ring. I really love riding on the middle ring I think, which explains why I wore it out and the 2T difference was nothing at all. I guess I am all set with the bike for the next long haul!
At the next stop, we realised that Krissi had to be at her Host’s place by 4 PM and it was going to be a bit of a rush to get there. And of course, we had to have a big ass hill and super heavy traffic too! First the hill showed up, it wasn’t too big, but it did slow us down and we rode up and down thro the UCSD campus. Later we had to ride thro some serious traffic, they behaved a bit like the LA traffic too, duh. But after noodling around the streets, we ended up finding the beach side bike path and rode up.
I had a message from Joon Leng and had to meet him only at 7 PM. So I let Krissi head out on her way and found a Starbucks to park my ass for the evening. At some point they were clearing some of their cookies (pretty much throwing it to garbage). But I stopped them and ended up scoring a half a dozen cookies and a couple of caramel Nougats. Heh.
The evening I headed to meet Joon Leng at his place. We walked around to get some dinner (Tacos and burrito’s, heh) and spent the evening catching up on old times (which usually means bitching about the company we worked for :-p ) and talking about current events too.
Route: Huntington Beach to San Diego
Distance: 95 Km
Ascent: 2050 ft
Descent: 2150 ft
Expenses: $ 58.88
Comment: Thou shall never be complacent. There is always a hill lurking.