Lori and I decided to get some cross-training under our belt this spring and complement our lead climbing with long-distance cycling. We plan to complete our first century ride (read: 100 mile bike ride) this May: the Montauk Century. Ambitious? Probably. Effective? Likely. Masochistic? Certainly.
Our first training ride of the season was a short but hilly 35 miles from Columbus Circle, NYC to Englewood, New Jersey, surpassing stunning vistas of Englewood Cliffs, a suburban cornucopia of mansions and Maseratis, just a hop, skip, and cycle away from the George Washington Bridge.
(By the way, if a former San Franciscan-turned-New-Yorker ever refers to a ride as ‘flat,’ then most likely he/she is sandbagging you and the route in question will indeed be accompanied by a series of not-so-flat hills – just sayin’).
6 hours and a northern New Jersey diner run later, as we biked back from suburban oasis to skyscraper central down W59th Street, it dawned on me that my bike had just taken me worlds away in just under an hour. And I smiled as I thought of all the other stamps I’d accumulated in my short cycling career (just under a year), discovering new enclaves through local cycling excursions, from my West Indian neighborhood to Bengali/Pakistani-populated Kensington, to Russian-dominated Manhattan Beach via Neptune Ave, and back; up the Hudson, down the Hudson, through the woods and urban sprawl.
A different kind of passport.