I can hear the faint buzzing of my single speed freewheel over the music in my headphones.
Always thinking it is the sound of air escaping from my rear wheel.
For some reason I always hear it as a whisssssss.. and not a bzzzzzzz.
I can still hear the clicking of gears over the rasp of my breathing when I
stand and start to accelerate out of the corner at the last cross race I did.
I still reach for the non existent button behind the brake lever when I want another gear
up or Down.
And while I haven’t ridden it in almost two months I can still remember the way
My body sits in the cockpit of my road bike, how my hands rest in the pocket of
the drops and I lean it into a corner at thirtysomething miles per hour.
More vividly, so perhaps more importantly, I remember a ride on that same bike in the early weeks of the new year that started under a bridge on the East side of the river then headed West through an industrial area split by old rail tracks then out to and around an island on a shitty day where both the wind and rain were terrible. When the only tension between me and the person I was riding with was whether I should ride shoulder to shoulder with them so that we could endure the wind together, or if I should give them my wheel and take the brunt of that hellish wind.
Things were easier between us then, but are better than they were back then.
If that makes sense.
I can still feel the first time I took a perfect corner while on training ride. I was in a mad dash to catch Nate. I wanted it so bad that I threatened to denied myself a post ride treat if I touched the brakes. My setup was perfect, as was the execution. The feeling of coming out that turn at speed filled me with such delight that I screamed with joy.
I never caught Nate’s wheel.
I’m okay with that.
I remember a series of months when my shortest ride was two hours.
I haven’t gone on a ride longer than two hours since August.
The other day I told someone that I haven’t gone a day where I wasn’t close to tears since August. I don’t think that’s a coincidence.