My guidance system was set to the coordinates of Dauset to ride solo. This trail and I have had our differences. The first time I rode it was an epic fall trip with the Worm, Curl, Lil Ball and Cliffbar. The next two were soaked with rain, plagued by mud and ended with us getting lost and bonked. I had to face my foe, and doing it solo made me all the more nervous. I have been avoiding solo rides at home, and this trail is in the middle of nowhere.
I can not say that I had a great ride. I can not say I hated my ride. I can only say it was a completely new sensation and that I am glad for it. I did get lost and I did find my way out. I did ride Huff and Puff twice and I am sure that my heart rate never went below 165bpm. If it was from being out of my element or the relentless climbing, I will never know. All I can tell you is; I never saw another rider and for the first time in years, I felt like a new rider again. When I returned to the parking lot the sky was nearly dark, I was tired, hungry, and smiling. It was time to head to the Chateau Elan' and to hear me Ole' Bother Davie sing some Irish tunes.
My brother Davey is loved by all, everywhere he goes. He has the enthusiasm of a child and he greets every day with wonder and excitement. This quality is unaffected by reality or circumstance. He has been playing the same songs for years and neither he nor anyone else, ever tires of them. He is unfazed by any audience or venue and plays his sets as though they were his last act on this earth. I always marvel at how he loves to perform, and I am sad to say it is a quality I lost long ago. Being in the audience and watching makes me wish I could return to the days I enjoyed bars and the people in them. I do miss performing, but after (an estimated) 3000 plus gigs, over thirty years, I lost the taste for the form. I watch as people enter the room and Davie wins them over. A table of rich women in their twenties sit right up front and ignore him while drinking cosmos. One is wearing a sash that says: "Bride". They are not pretty and I suspect time they will not improve them, but they look like they will have money forever judging from the Coach bags, Rolex watches, and large diamonds on their ring fingers. Davie does not engage them, but instead stares through and around them as he smiles, tells stories and introduces the next song. He mentions that he usually plays this song at weddings, but thinks it might be good. The girls swing in their chairs and face Davie for the first time as he sings: "You Say Nothing At All" by Alison Kruass. The women move their mouths to the words and never turn away from Davie for the rest of the set. He repeats this process with another loud table by playing "Patty Won't Be At Work Today" by The Dubliners. He has succeeded in getting the room on his side. I shake my head and laugh.
I am tired and since my new medical parameters prevent alcohol, I retreat to the room. Tomorrow we ride to North Carolina, to visit our brother Jimmy in Land Harbour. I drift off into a dreamless sleep, after a great first day.