I showed up at PDX a bit frazzled from my busy work schedule, the end of classes, and my last week of the City Management Academy. I had been hoping to ride out to Champoeg, a cute little campground that we had stayed at about 6 years ago during our epic (for us) 600-mile bike tour around Oregon when Big Brother was just 10-months old. However, because I was borrowing a bike from a friend in Portland, I didn't think I'd have enough time to get the bike and ride the 35 miles to the campground before class started. Plus, I was being extra gentle with myself to get through these final weeks of my crazy schedule. Luckily, I was able to reach out to another participant and get a ride into camp. I was sorry to not get the ride along a beautiful road and to rack up some extra miles for May Is Bike Month but I was happy to keep my energy up for the fully packed weekend.
The course was wonderful. I cannot sing the praises of our leaders, Joyce, Wally, Sid, and Joe, enough. They gave us plenty of guidance but in a way that encouraged us to create our own trip and get exactly what we needed out of this experience. Getting to know the inner workings of an Adventure Cycling trip made me only want to join one even more. To my surprise, even with a group of 20 participants, we were able to form a cohesive group where we shared cooking duties (and I was one of the lucky winners to one of the best meals of the trip which earned me a fancy pair of ACA socks), got to know each other, and rode together. I met some great people whom I look forward to keeping in touch with. There wasn't much riding but we were kept busy with other important things--like a talent show that everyone participated in. We camped out in a grassy field, it rained one night and I realized that I need to re-waterproof my old tent but otherwise stayed nice and warm.
Home again to my happy, wonderful kids and and crazy busy schedule. Children to cuddle, bike clinics to teach, rodeos to set up, finals to finalize, and city management graduations to graduate from.