Saturday, February 2, 2008

The Latest

Finally, time to post again. :) After some heavy weeks of training & work & getting ready for training camp, there was very little time the past few weeks to post - but had to make time now, since I have big news to share: Josh & I are engaged! Yah!

I left for San Diego on Saturday, Jan 26th, 2008 for the Team Kenda Tire team camp. We stayed in an awesome house with mission style decor & garden area with an extra guest house on the property. It was a great week of riding. The first day, we met up with Deanna, a former Kenda Tire rider from DC who is now living in San Diego with her husband & 2 young sons. She is so incredibly warm & friendly. She showed us an awesome route through Rancho Santa Fe, the 2nd richest 'hood in the world. After that ride, some of us went longer up the 101 HWY to Oceanside. I somehow got separated from the group at what I thought was a bathroom stop & had to find my own way home, which took a little longer than I had expected.

On Monday, we packed the bikes & drove about an hour inland to a small town to climb Palomar Mtn (about 7% for 15 miles or so). I thought I was having a crappy day on the bike since I couldn't hang onto the wheels of "non-climbers." Turns out my brakes were rubbing the whole way up - not good! Anyway, we ran into un-passable snow at 5000ft & had to descent through freezing rain. A few of us were very near hypothermia & we had to stop & warm up a few times while coming down the Mtn. Eventually, we called the team director, Paul, back at the vans to come & round us up - it wasn't worth it with all the riding we had yet to do the rest of the week.

Tuesday was an awesome 85 mile ride inland through lots of rolling hills. On our way back into town though we had some people not so happy with our presence & had lots of buzzes & a red bull flung at us. Paul followed us most of the day in the mini-van, but we all forgot to put extra bottles in, so it was a rehydrate fest when we got home. Paul treated us to Sushi this night. A few of us were brave enough to try "monkey balls" (tempera mushrooms stuffed with shrimp & salmon with rice noodles on them), but were surprised when they came to the table with wispy noodles waving in the wind - they move!

Wednesday was supposed to be an "easy" day, but it ended up being a group ride for 40 miles over rolling terrain. No one was prepared for the 3 hour ride time, so we were famished when we got home. This is the day we discovered Pannikan coffee house. Amazing coffee and baked goods. I devoured my blue berry banana nut muffin.

Thursday was another climbing day. A few of us drove out to Ramona, CA & climbed 22 miles Julian, which also had snow at 4200 ft. The climbing this day was more gradual most of the time with shorter steep sections, but we had a great tail wind going up the mountain. It was raining, hailing & sleeting on us as we climbed. Paul had extra clothes in the van behind us, so when it came time to come down, we had some warm dry stuff to put on for the way down. I had an awesome day climbing this day - redeemed myself from Monday. I got frigging cold on the way down & opted to climb in the van. By this time, many of the girls were starting to get sick & I didn't want to take any chances by getting too cold.

Friday was a total easy day. 1 hour 12 mph avg ride & a 3 hour nap - nice. Great afternoon for a little walk on the beach.

Saturday was a CRAZY group ride with the Swami's team. There were over 100 people screaming through town on arterials & backroads, flying up hills & screaming down twisty descents..It was like being in a men's race- except no rolling enclosure. Most of the other girls were not too keen on this group ride, but I figured it was safer up front & less risk of getting nipped by a passing car in the middle - so I had a blast mixing it up. I was 1 or 2 women in the whole group to make it into the lead pack at the end of the ride. Such a killer ride! I was on a total high when I got home...and tired. I took a shower & laid down for a nap.

After slipping into a deep sleep & starting to dream - I had been having vivid dreams all week - someone poked me on the arm. I flipped off my eye-mask & removed the pillow that I sleep with over my head to see...Josh standing over me. I couldn't believe it & thought I was still dreaming. I jumped up & gave him a big hug & asked him what he was doing there. He said he had missed me & came to see me & would I like to go for a walk on the beach? I couldn't figure out how he knew where we were staying & how he found it. He finally let me know that he had contacted Paul from the team & he referred him to Kristen, the team captain, who secretly helped him find me & the perfect time to come by.

We went down to the beach on a gorgeous sunny day & walked for awhile. Finally, Josh handed me a pretty ring - designed for my "active" life - & proposed. sweet. I said yes.

Josh had a hotel & dinner reservations already booked in La Jolla, so we went home & packed up. On the way back to the house I called my parents in a total daze to fill them in. They were exuberant. :)

La Jolla was wonderful. Josh's mom & cousin had helped him pick out clothes, shoes & jewelry for him to take with him for me to wear to dinner. Oh man - I couldn't believe everything that went into this proposal. He did a great job of sweeping me off my feet.
In La Jolla, we had a little snack on some rocks over looking the beach & then a nap at the hotel before getting ready for dinner. Dinner was fantastic with yummy wine & desert & COFFEE. After dinner at George's, we changed clothes & walked around town in pouring rain (CA was having crazy stormy wet weather) going into art galleries & being cute together.

Sunday we both flew home. It was so nice to be home after an amazing & fulfilling week of training & the whole proposal thing. :) Sky was freaked out when we got home. She was sooo happy to see us that she could not decide if she wanted to be inside or outside or in or out the back or front door & she meowed incessantly. That is either her way of punishing us or showing excitement. She also did her typical Sky maneuvers of drooling while being pet & sitting with her left paw raised up like a little Sky statue while drooling.

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