The Friends We Make Par Duex

Tonight, I had dinner with David whom I hadn’t seen in 37 years.  We met on a cruise ship in Greece, summer of ’80.  He’s British, and was traveling with his father… we were a rowdy bunch of Americans spending the summer in Europe.  We all hit it off and absorbed him into our mania.

This morning, Gould and I were out rolling around town.  Zone 3 was his assignment, my assignment was self-assigned:  get out on that new bike!  While we blasted along the coast we picked up a caboose.  We turned right, he turned with us.

I turned and said, I’m Todd.  He said, I’m Justin.  Where are ya headed, I quizzed.  Home.  Where’s that?  Up ahead.

You on Strava?  Yep, Justin Aida.  Cool, I’m there too.  We meet at La Pata and Saluda every Tuesday at 5:50am.  Join us.  Will do.

We parted ways.

Gould and I rode on.  My bike, so new and pretty, still wasn’t “fit” to me by Eileen.  That would happen at lunch.  So I rode with a little discomfort, comforted knowing that would soon change.

Eileen’s, my kindred sister.  She’s been fitting me for 18 years.  She keeps all my fits on paper.  She’s old school and new school all in one.  When I told her what bike I was getting, she paused… I could hear her shuffling through my file.  In less than a minute, she blurted frame size and stem length and bar width and saddle width and crank length.  I try and explain the magic she works, most people can’t see the value.  A few do, and their riding is changed forever.

You’re changed forever, because it’s more than a bike fit.  Sometimes I’ll see her for an adjustment and she’ll touch my leg.  Work is stressful, isn’t it?  That’s weird I think, but then I absorb what it takes to pick up on someone’s state like that and realize why she’s such a treasured friend and mentor.

Dinner time came.  What  a reunion.  It was awesome.  So fun to hear what people have done with their lives.  What brought us together again is another story.

But what does bring us together?

As I wrapped up the day, I checked in on Strava.  Justin had left a comment on the morning ride.  Then Mike C had commented on Justin’s comment.  Turns out, Mike had rented a house with Justin’s brother and my brother in Huntington a few years back.

Maybe it’s not what brings us together that’s important but why we are brought together and what we learn and share with each other that matters?

Ride On.