Andy organized the ride. He thinks he came up with it when Wayne challenged him to create a ride where all the controls are BBQ restaurants. Andy did so. Unfortunately, two of the BBQ places closed before we could hold the ride. Therefore, the ride was ironic. Ironically, I don't do irony.
It sorta kinda might still have been a 3 BBQ ride if we had bought pork rinds at a couple of controls. In the interest of our arteries, I came up with an alternate plan: pig tails. I brought some pink pipe cleaners and a baggie full of safety pins leftover from cycling races. Just about everyone partook of the accoutrements.
|Andy stylin' with his pig tail|
The Euharlee 3 BBQ Populaire is just over 100 km long. Populaires are less than 200 km. This was only my second populaire. My RUSA rides are usually brevets (200 km or longer).
We gathered in the small town of Euharlee. I've lived in Georgia my whole life and had never heard of Euharlee. It's near Cartersville. Although Euharlee is very small, it has a nice park, a rather large police station, and a pizza place.
About 20 of us showed up for the ride. A few people who had signed up bailed out due to a good chance of rain. However, we didn't get a drop on us during the ride. This is because Jim H. and I carried rain coats with us.
I thought this might be a more casual ride where people mostly stayed together, but within a few miles, I found myself chasing the fastest guys, Jason, Todd, and Tommy. It was a solid tempo ride for me, even drafting them most of the way. It was a lot like a Saturday ride with the guys in Macon, only with pig tails:
Not only were the company and the quality of the riding great, the roads were, too. I've ridden some in this northwest part of Georgia, but many of the roads on this populaire were unfamiliar to me. They were quite scenic with very little traffic.
The four of us finished the populaire in about 4 hours and 15 minutes. There had been talk of a group lunch outing afterwards, and so I hung out for a while. Pretty soon, Andy showed up. He wanted to stay at the park to keep track of other riders as they came in, but he gave me some cash from the registration fees to get some pizzas for the group. I was glad to serve as courier. It didn't take too long to go to Covered Bridge Pizza just down the road, order a few large pizzas, and bring them back to the park for the group. It was quite enjoyable to have a meal together afterwards. Wayne has just become our new Regional Brevet Administrator (RBA), and he hopes to plan more social events for us like this.
I've been enjoying RUSA - rides and people - for going on five years. I'm grateful it's part of my life.