A couple of bike rides later I am feeling tired but much better than I felt immediately upon arriving home Friday. Saturday, Sweetie and I meandered slowly and leisurely around the neighborhood, stopping at Di Prima Dolci to enjoy coffee and fresh, warm Zeppole. Afterwards, about all I could handle was a nap, which was fine with Sweetie. It was a sort of slow day that I really needed to recover from Vegas.
This morning, feeling better and delighting in the gray skies and light drizzle outside, I rolled over to Woodlawn Park to meet whomever was going to show up for a little cyclocross practice. Crystal was there, already practicing suitcase carries over her homemade barriers (I'd left mine home). The two of us spent the next solid hour playing cyclocross, rolling over the wet grass and through the few small muddy puddles, while a light rain fell off and on. We showed each other what we knew, and I introduced Crystal to my favorite off-camber part of the park. I was having a little breathing trouble in the beginning but things improved as I rode. After about an hour, we'd had enough and spent another hour or so enjoying coffee and tea at a nearby coffee house that was not far from home for either of us. The time on the bike did me some real good. I am still tired, and tonight my sinuses are clogged (probably from a combination of constantly-changing barometric pressure, my airplane travels and riding in the rain for almost 90 minutes) but I am much mellower, and happy to be home.
My next (and probably final) cyclocross practice is Wednesday night. First race of my season is next Sunday at Alpenrose. I expect it to be a total mob scene, with ridership to exceed last year's start field of just over 1,400 racers (in all categories). Several friends of mine are skipping Alpenrose this year in favor of a Vancouver, WA race the day before, where the start fields will be considerably smaller. After last year's USGP and my growing aversion to racing on Shabbat, I have decided tat this cross season I will try very hard to stick to Sunday racing only and see how it goes.
Schedule for Alpenrose is here. All womens' categories race together at 2 pm, next to the last race of the day. I will probably go out pretty early so I can pre-ride or at least walk the course, and watch some friends race in earlier categories. I hope to stay for the final race of the day after I'm done, as I'm sure to see a few of the same elite/pro racers there that I watched last Wednesday night at Cross Vegas.