It's not about the bike


AIDSLifecycle 2010 - Day #5 -"Red Dress Day?"

Traditionally being the shortest daily mileage of the week, "Red Dress Day" usually passes with ease. 67 miles seems like nothing. And one's only contemplation is whether or not to sport something RED in support of those who suffer, those who have died, and for those who presently are affected by the AIDS Pandemic .

However, (with a minor change from the traditional route), this year, the 67 mile trek did not come with ease ... it was a route that'BROKE THE CAMEL'S BACK!!!!!!!!!"

Departing at 6:30am. (from Preisker Park, Santa Maria), I rode like "a champ"to the town of 84 houses, Sisquoc. Upon entering Sisquoc, I visited 4960 Foxen Cyn to take my morning coffee at the neighborhood Sisquoc Store. As I drank my morning coffee, I contemplated heading straight for the finish line (passing up the lunch stop in Solvang).

Yet feeling social. I took a 30 minute lunch break in Solvang. During this time, I chatted up my favorite volunteer participants - "the CANNONDALE BIKE TECHS!!!"

After eating my humus sandwich, I departed Solvang. And, feeling like a million dollars & with approx 30 miles to go, I traveled on Highway 246 toward River Park, Lompoc, CA. Everything was going well, yet then came the 20 -40 mph winds.

Over the past 15 years, I've been hit by 3 cars, road directly into bushes, fallen over train tracks, "bonked," and even ventured 15 miles off route YET never had I run to into winds of this magnitude ...

As I cursed the AIDS/Lifecycle Route Planner & bounced from side to side, I wished I was 50lbs heavier. Moving at approx. 8 mph, I diligently worked at stopping the "little man in my head." I focused on the exhalation of the breath & struggled to peddle the remaining approx. 15 miles to camp. And at one point, I contemplated walking my bike. Yet then, I remembered my sponsors, my mother, and my yoga students - so, I trekked on!

Feeling like I had just completed a "double century," angrily, I arrived safely to camp. And as I placed my bike in bike parking, a volunteer suggested that I place my bike elsewhere. AND THEN, my frustrations surfaced, I CHEWED OFF THE HEAD OF THE BIKE PARKING VOLUNTEER.

As I left bike parking and proceeded to the gear truck, I realized that my frustrations had taken over & that I was not practicing "ahimsa." I realized that my actions where far from Buddhism. I realized that I owed the man an apology.

Arriving at my gear truck, I searched quietly for my luggage. I looked in front of the truck. I looked under the truck. Yet my bag was no where to be recognized. And then, I saw a pile of clothes which I recognized. (In short, a zipper on my bag had exploded & my clothes where everywhere) ...

Upon glancing at my bag, I stated to myself "that's what you get for chewing off the bike parking volunteer's head ..."

And at that moment, I immediately fell to the ground & set inPadmasana (for 20 minutes) until I regained my Yogic & Buddhist composure.

Question: So what did I learn from this experience?


1. It's not all about the bike.
2. From every experience you have the opportunity to learn.
3. When life throws you a "loop" - then life has throw you a "loop." And although it may be difficult to endure the change of plans (or route) - such is life. Life is always changing. Therefore, it's better to sit quietly in Padmasana & figure out "what is truly causing your frustrations?" (and/or ask for help) than to thrash out with negativity at the individuals who are there to support your endeavors.

A wonderful experience it was (smile).









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