Mon semblable, mon frère

Finally, I am not alone! Guess who caught up to me today? Another single-speed rider! I’ve been here at Secret City for seven months and this guy is riding the first vitesse unique I’ve seen besides my own. His is blue, with some kind of circle-R nameplate, and rainbow accent striping around the tubes. But it’s definitely a single-speed frame, with the dropouts facing the rear to help maintain proper chain tension. I was circling around in the non-customary direction (clockwise) today, having just passed the detention facility, and he came along from behind, then I caught up to him.

We started to hammer along past the same marines who were running in groups as last week, while I hung on his wheel, then as we approached the taxiway I told him I would pull from there. So I got in front and we went along past the new chapel and the fire station. At the Barrels, the junction with Perimeter Rd, he went left, back down the hill, and I went right, around for another loop. I saw him again a half-hour later going in the other direction.

I said only three things to him (“I’ll pull from the taxiway on” / “I’m going around for another loop” / “Okay.”) but there’s something about seeing someone with the same kind of bike that makes me feel as if I have a secret friend in the secret city. Someone else came to the same conclusion I did about how much easier it would be to maintain the fixed-wing down here, and how the absence of gears would be compensated for by the absence of hills, and made the same choice I did! I am vindicated! I’m a trendsetter!

Of course, the next chapter of the story is that it was a real doozy of a ride. I broke the 7-mile-loop record I set and wrote about last week, doing the circuit in 21′ 19″, and I was so energized the whole way through that I did the full 28 miles in less than 1:33, or faster than 18 mph. I guess considering this morning’s run it’s been a pretty good fitness day all around. Now it’s six p.m. and time for dinner.