Training log: Riding the Big Hill

So, it turns out that Borland Rd. isn't the only serious hill in the area. We also have a the section of Orange Grove Rd. that runs from the top of a hill almost straight down for a good half mile. Unlike Borland, it is completely straight, but there are also no flat spots on the way up - the highway engineers drew a straight line from one level to the other and bulldozed it into shape. The net effect is that this is the only road in the area I ride on any kind of a regular basis where I think about just stopping and walking the rest of the way up the hill. Fortunately it's never actually come to that, and today I actually managed to pace myself a little better, so I could still breathe and move my legs once I got to the top.

I'm working from home today as my daughter has developed a fever overnight, so part of the point of the ride today was to get something healthy for lunch. After starting off riding down a road near my house I headed into downtown Hillsborough and the Weaver St. Market co-op grocery store. You have to imagine me walking in with somewhat wild gray hair dressed in skin-tight Lycra and with cycling shoes that are not fit for walking, but I'm sure I was quite the sight. In any case, I got a vegetarian burrito from the deli section (and a Get Well Soon chocolate-chip cookie for my daughter) and headed to the checkout, where the woman working the register asked me if I had a co-op membership. I'm standing here in Lycra, needing a shave, and holding a vegetarian burrito, and you want to know if I have a co-op membership?!? Of course I do!
When I got back outside, happy to see my bike hadn't been stolen, there was another guy with his urban bike getting ready to head out. He was about my age, but had sketchy tattoos on his arms and the general look of someone half-way between a homeless guy and an unsuccessful artist. I said "Hello," and his response was a cheerful "Hi! I'm glad I'm not the only one!" I spent the rest of the ride home wondering what that meant. "I'm glad I'm a) not the only guy who doesn't seem to have a day job, or b) not the only one in strange clothes here at the grocery store, or c) not the only one forced to ride a bike while I work off the DUI conviction."
All in all, a pleasant diversion from the rest of the work day, and way better than fighting traffic on a ride in Cary.