I don't have much day to day interaction with my brother for a number of reasons - he lives two hours away, he leads a ridiculously busy work/social life and he's horrible about keeping in touch, staying in touch, returning phone calls and/or emails. Occasionally I can pin him down via instant messenger, almost always in the wee hours of the morning since we're both night owls/insomniacs and even then we don't exchange much "what's new with you?" type information. So when I do get to see him I'm usually surprised about something, like this Africycle thing.
Now, of course I know about Africycle. I blogged incessantly about the first Ride for Africycle leading up to the 100 mile bike ride Dave organized and rode last September. And I have blogged about The Ride For Africycle 2.0. This time Dave pulled out all the stops, riding with a crew on a route that would take them around Lake Ontario, a distance of 1000 kms. This is not a ride to be taken lightly. This is a ride you need to be in serious shape for. A ride you need to train for, but this is not a topic that would come up in our infrequent late night conversations. In my mind I knew he was doing some major training to get ready for a solid week of cycling. Still I was surprised to see him this week at his stop in Hamilton in his spandex, with his cycling shoes and his power gel looking very much like an actual cyclist..... oh and did I mention he's decidedly smaller than he was. Like a lot smaller.
Thursday night Dave and crew spent the night at a Cafe in the downtown core. Since they were so close to home Mom and TLP took the opportunity to make the crew a feast to end all feasts. As you know, Mom never does anything in little bits. So her dinner fed the crew, the staff at the cafe, the cafe's evening entertainment, the Africycle support crew, any relatives of the crew that happened to be in the area and there were still a ton of leftovers to divvy up.
This ride has been a huge undertaking, one I didn't fully appreciate until I spent Thursday evening with them all. It's not just the actual ride, but organizing where the stopovers will be and the support vehicle. Wow, that's just a huge part of this endeavour. The couple driving the support van (parents of a couple of the cyclists) had been feeding the team for the past 5 days. Which meant shopping every day since space to store things was limited and a bunch of grown men, plus one girl, can eat a lot when they're spending all day on a bicycle. On Thursday they celebrated their 27th wedding anniversary and were just thankful that they were eating a meal they hadn't had to prepare.
As I type this now the crew should all be in their homes, tucked into their own beds enjoying a well deserved rest. The Ride For Africycle 2.0 is over, but it's not too late to donate to this worthy cause. You can hop on over to Ride For Africycle to make a donation or read some trip highlights or if you're lucky enough to have that new fangled high speed internet watch some videos.
*flickr is being a pain and not wanting to upload my pictures. I'll try some more tomorrow.