June is my final month before all crazy breaks loose with my exchange student program. Amazingly, this is the first year that we are done BEFORE our deadline! Our incredible Sacramento team kicked butt and pulled it together beautifully! I am so impressed! To celebrate, I decided to flit off on my June overnight (barely squeezing one in at all...). Something close was the necessary criteria and I realized that I haven't done Beal's Point this year (yes, we went to Negro Bar which is close but it's not the same). Since I decided Beal's would be too easy of an overnight, I decided to add a little challenge--two little challenges, in fact!
We packed our Hubba Hubba 2-person tent, two sleeping bags, two sleeping mats, some extra blankets because these guys won't tolerate being zipped into a bag, a spare set of clothes for the boys, warm sleeping clothes, socks and a new shirt for me, tooth brushes, sunblock, hippy bug spray, a couple toys and a couple books, Big Brother's baseball gear, three bottles of water, and some food.
Once I got to Folsom, I knew there were few extra turns to get over the bridge. I stopped and asked a couple of different people at each intersection to make sure I was headed in the right direction. Every one of them looked at me and said "You realize that it's ALL UPHILL?" I told them that I did realize that and thanked them for the directions (while muttering under my breath about their wimpy 20-pound bikes and chiseled calves).
And then the uphill really started. And kept going. And going. In reality, it's about a 600' elevation gain over 3 miles. Nothing super crazy but we don't have hills in Sacramento so this is big for us. I used up every gear the Mundo had and just kept spinning and spinning and spinning. A jogger lapped us. So we stopped to pick some blackberries.
Now the real work started--corralling two uncooped children. I managed to set up camp while the kids ran around. Little Brother is my bolter and managed to run down the road pretty far before I could catch him. Big Bother just kept bugging me to play baseball with him. We then walked over to the lake as a last-ditch effort in hopes that the concession stand was still open. My meal planning skills are lacking and we had run out of edible food pretty quickly (the more I ride, the more they eat). Again, it was like herding fireflies. Luckily for us, we were able to find snow cones!
By 6:45 am, it was sweltering outside and we were all awake (I'd like to point out that this is "sleeping in" for us). Big Brother woke everyone up with a gleeful shout of "A bunny!!!" I didn't have any breakfast for the boys because we had eaten everything the day before. I packed up camp in about 1.5 hours (record time) and we set off for Karen's Bakery. The downhill was a beautiful way to start the day but anytime the road started back up, I could feel every muscle in my body screaming. We'd go from 20+mph down to 4 mph. What took us an hour to do last night was over in just 20 minutes or so.
Today was super hot and slow moving. Little Brother fell asleep and Big Brother eventually started complaining again. I pulled over to let him "rest" but the minute he was off the bike, he was running around.
When we did finally stop later down the trail, they caught the eye of a friendly Park Ranger who gave them stickers for wearing their helmets. The boys rolled in the dirt a bit more and we filled up our water bottles for the third time of the day.
Finally, just two miles from home, back on city streets, I suddenly realized that Big Brother wasn't crashing his head into me on purpose, he was falling asleep! I couldn't engage him and his poor little head just kept bobbing uncontrollably. I pulled over and walked the bike in the crosswalk to a frozen yogurt shop that just happened to be across the way.
As an added bonus to the day, Jose decided that he was unable to get Big Brother to swim practice that started 2 hours after we got home. We took a quick shower to scrape off the layers of grime then Big Brother and I hopped on the Bullitt (I wasn't going to risk him falling asleep again) and sped off. We arrived just in time (it was 9 more miles each way and I will admit that I wasn't thrilled to be doing it). I was drenched in sweat but Big Brother had a fantastic class followed by another class to make up for a session we had missed.
Then, I did what anyone would do in my position--having ridden 39 miles, 9 more to go, Big Brother having just swum for an hour, it was 102+ outside, and dinnertime--we went to Costco! For just under $4 (because that was all the cash I had), we got a giant slice of pizza to share and a HUGE ice cream (which melted almost immediately and turned into the milkshake I had been craving this whole time).
Turns out that Big Brother was pretty tired of it, too.
Every part of my body hurts when I move, my arms are sunburnt, and the Bullitt's pedal took a chunk out of my heel. Tomorrow, I demand a morning to sleep in.