but I want to ride...

this afternoon I had a permission slipped signed with the Father's Day rubber stamp of approval
the window was not large enough to get fat tires on dirt so I got out on the road bike
tried to resolve my sluggish rear wheel issues
but may be learning that it is me that is sluggish and not my less than perfect wheel

took off with great ambition to do an extended ride a little longer than I usually do
double the out and back on beach drive or loop out towards Potomac Maryland
finish at my dad's house in Bethesda to join my wife and kids at the pool
oh wait... there is someone here by the gate unable to put her pedal on her department store bike

there were lots of people around
she already had a man who was willing to assist by her side
so I rolled on
but immediately I thought... I should have just pulled over and helped them out

by the time I had this revelation I was a few pedal strokes away so I kept rolling
a glance at my cluster and I thought about my pace, my intensity, and the feeling that my bike is suffering some serious resistance issues
sure the wheel is slightly out of true
but I swapped the fat 28 tire and I loosened up the brakes a bit
yet it still drags.. or at least I was dragging

my mind wandered
I passed points along the creek where I had spent my morning with my boys
places where they climbed trees
spots where we played frisbee golf

the morning was mellow
the boys walked the dogs and fetched breakfast sandwiches from Heller's Bakery
we hiked in woods of Rock Creek so the dog could stretch his legs
once at Pierce Mill I pulled frisbees from my bag and we played frisbee golf
with a short break when the boys went in and explored the historic mill

I retraced my pedal strokes down a route I have traveled so many times before
yet somehow I am not bored of this route

at the Garret Park Road T in the road I did my standard turn around
feeling spry I looked at my watch
I measured an estimate of the day and my desire to get a longer ride 
need to spend more time in the saddle

the miles were falling behind me and I was feeling pretty good
knowing I was not yet nearly half way through my ride I was feeling as if I could maintain this pace for the duration
even if there is some sort of resistance coming from the rear hub

then something caught my eye
a woman on the bike path that twists and turns along side of the road
I had noticed this woman with her family on the way out
she was now alone and her young son's bike was upside down

as I passed I shouted out... "do you need any help?"
not sure what she said... but i knew she needed help so I turned it around
not having any tools I had issue getting my fingers around the chain guard
not having any tools I could not loosen the rear wheel to expedite the process and resolve the problem

but I was able to get the chain back on the bike
my interaction was slight... I was focused on assisting with the repair and returning to the street
things took a little longer than I wanted... not long
but enough to take some of the wind out of my sail

back on the bike hammering at pretty much the same pace
I thought about my effort
the doubling up of the out and back seemed a little ambitious
I was already out of drink... it was late afternoon and I had not had anything to eat since breakfast
the excuses were good enough for me

I thought about my options
finishing the loop and looping back to jump in the pool sounded like an option
I figured I could finish my ride and call my wife to see what the plan was for dinner
yes... stir fry at home was the original plan... but I thought that may change

no change... stir fry at home was still the plan
and a trip to bethesda was not necessary 
the boys were not even in the pool
instead I went home and chilled in a silent house
walked the dog... then showered... and chilled in a silent house

not a bad wind down to Father's Day

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