Blacked-Eyed Peas And Tall Tales
Lone Star Randonneurs held their second annual New Years Day 200k, and the 15 very hardy souls who showed up at 8:00 a.m. for this celebratory ride were rewarded with a dry day and moderate temperatures in the 60s. The high temperature for the day was 74 degrees with a little sun peeking out in the early afternoon. Much better conditions than the cold rain experienced on the inaugural ride last year.
This Celebration started and ended at the local RBA's pad in Arlington, Texas and looped southward through the towns of Cedar Hill, Midlothian, Maypearl (birth place of Lance, by the way), Italy (Texas), and Waxahachie. Our rider mix included four women, two tandems, three out-of-staters, one new randonneur, and lots of friendly, happy riders. Finishing times ranged from 8 hours to 11:23 hours. Times were affected by a brisk wind, some hills, three flat tires, and some missed turns. The turn that was missed the most was the turn marked on the Q-sheet as "easy to miss". In spite of all the "adversity," everyone that started finished. The New Years Day God's must have dealt the farm dogs a brutal hangover, because not a one chased us.
Finishing festivities included generous helpings of lucky black-eyed peas and cornbread, brownies for dessert and champagne...which contributed to a boisterous round of tall tales. Eating black-eyed peas on New Years Day is a Southern tradition thought to bring good luck for the coming year. The origins of this interesting tradition are unclear, but one long-held belief is that eating this humble, modest food is a way of showing humility - something that should be rewarded.
We even had a couple of non-riding randonneurs show up for some grub.
The best quote heard all day was from a newcomer from out-of-state. Several LSRs were admiring the Oklahoman's well-worn bike, complete with handlebar bag, and accompanying randonneuring paraphernalia. Asked, "So, how long have you been a randonneur?" He took a good look at his watch and answered "20 minutes". Seems like bike commuting is a slippery slope to randonneuring.
The friendly folks of LSR would like to extend a big Texas-sized welcome to anyone that would like to come down next year and join us for a New Years Day Brevet, or any other Brevet for that matter. Why sit at home with a hangover when you can fly/drive to Texas and ride with the LOCO's? Heck, we'll even promise 74 degree, dry weather for every year. Whether you get it or not depends on how many black-eyed peas you ate last year.