|Me and my brother-in-law posing|
for Velojournal in 2008
|now entering Switzerland|
My husband Ivo was raised in a cycling family. The family bike tours began on a back seat on his father's bike, then those weird attached bikes on the back of his father's bike, then they had their ever-bigger bikes, as they learned the tactics to power up hills (mostly cursing and/or trying to beat one another) and how to pack in calorie-rich foods before getting back on the bike and climbing insane peaks and then zooming down the other side.
|Ivo at his annual Sept bike race|
Where Ivo and I meet is the joy of "wanna go ride bikes?" As a kid, going to our friends houses and proposing the plan of riding bikes aimlessly was a regular fun afternoon. When I was 8, I taught my best friend to ride a bike. I ran along side her bike as she rode down our slightly sloping street. At first I held on and then I let go and ran along side her, shouting encouragement.
When Ivo's family do a bike tour, his father will not be satisfied unless they get well over than 100 kilometers behind them in a day. When Ivo and I "go ride bikes," the idea is fun, and the result is an amazing sense of togetherness. Ivo is so amazing at slowing his speed for me if need be, we encourage each other while heading up hill, and when energy is flagging, we have an impromptu dance party and find a peppy song to sing aloud or in our heads to keep a good tempo.
|Me in Rapperswil|
|Ivo in Holland|
We started in Pontarlier, France and moved along the trail until Couvert, Switzerland at a leisurely pace with lovely breaks. We chose to go in this direction because there was one super steep incline and we wanted to go down it instead of up it.
|Me in Luzern|
There's trouble for a non-practiced tourer cycling long distances with a unique bike seat. (I have a special crotchless bike saddle, that is made of two ovals and has to be set very low on the bike. This makes hills particularly difficult, because I have to work different muscle groups to power up the incline.) And I can get cranky when I feel that I'm not going fast enough. But Ivo encourages me, slows down and will even push his bike with me if I can't do make it up the hill. Ivo kindly lets me ride behind, so that I've got cover from the wind and I get a great view of his attractive, muscular backside.
When we got married in July of 2007, we emphasized the understanding that we'll always be growing and changing and that we won't be traveling the same path with one another, but paths next to one another; we want to respect one another's separateness. But the togetherness that I feel when I'm out riding bikes with my husband shows me how much fun it can be when we're on the same path, supporting and repecting one another and reaching the same goal.
|Worried about the |
weather the 1st morning
|me finishing the 1st flat's repair|
|Ivo fixes 2nd flat|
|We made it to Lac Neuchatel|
|made it to the train|