Last weekend I attended my first social/riding experience with SKCC (St. Kilda Cycling Club). I had switched clubs in August because I had been riding with a number of the women on a regular basis and it was much closer to my home. But because I have been away so much for the last few months I hadn’t been able to do much with the club, so this was my first chance. And what a wonderful weekend I had.
Upon arriving in Bright on the Friday afternoon I met up with my roommate Sophie (who I had never met before) and Karen who I had ridden with on the Saturday morning Liv/giant rides and we headed out for what was to be just a spin and roll the legs over! Sophie was new to the club as well and hadn’t done any riding in the Bright area. As I have done a lot of cycling in Bright I suggested that we head to Myrtleford and then out towards Lake Buffalo and Sophie and Karen agreed to follow me. We had a lovely headwind all the way…not what I had hoped for, but when we turned around to come back the tailwind had stuck around so it was a pretty fast return. We did run into some rain and a bit of wind on the last 10 Km but at least we were almost home! When we arrived back others had started to arrive at our accommodation and most of us headed out to find somewhere to eat.
I have never felt so welcomed into what I believe what feels like a family! There were 49 of us including about 4 of the male partners of some of the women and we were of all ages 20’s – 60’s. I have to admit that I am really bad with names and wasn’t quite sure if I would know many of the women who were going to be there. But funny enough when we finally had all arrived, the faces were familiar, as I had seen most people out on the road and now it was just time to put names to those faces! I must say that I was concerned that I wouldn’t be able to keep up with most of the riders, but everyone was so accommodating.
The weekend had been organised by Gaelene Snelling, a woman who is the most amazing organiser! On Saturday morning she had breakfast laid out for everyone and a huge piece of butchers paper on the wall with different rides that people were going to do. Quite a few were going to tackle Mount Hotham, one mountain that I don’t think my trike will ever see! But there were two women Liz and Karen who were going to head out the same way and then turn around at Harrietville, so my plan was to stick with them.
I must say that you really don’t realize how much you are climbing on the way to Harrietville until you turn around. I was a bit slower than the rest on the way but caught up with everyone in Harrietville at which time Karen, Liz and I decided that coffee was of the order before the return trip. I took them to a cafe I know of that makes the most amazing scones right on the premises and I think that is why I like riding so much…the food! So we made the most of the scones and coffee and then headed back out on the road. Once back in Bright Liz and Karen decided they were going to the bike shop but I had another couple of hours to ride so continued on my own, riding a number of different roads out and around Bright. The weather was fabulous and you really couldn’t have asked for a better day. The afternoon was spent in the motel pool as “recovery” from the day’s ride and discussion about where Sunday’s ride might take us!