It was our second day in Saskatchewan. We were rolling along with a moderate wind to our backs. I thought to myself, “I’m living my dream!” I had no idea what was coming.
Four days later I was drafting behind Richard, overconfident, riding too close. I touched his rear wheel with my front wheel — not once, but twice. At the second touch, my front wheel turned sideways. I was down on the ground — from 30 to 0 km/hr in 2 seconds!
What do you do when you are knocked down and your dream “flames out?” You get back up.
With a severely bruised hip and lacerated elbow (nine stitches), I rode along in the RV support vehicle and helped drive it, committed to the cause, inviting people to give clean drinking water to African villagers.
You get back on the bike. Still sore, from Ottawa to Grand Forks, NB, I cycled further each day, until the 5th day. 19 days after the accident I rode a full day with the team. I cycled the rest of the way to St. John’s, Newfoundland.
You plan to complete the dream. Even before we finished, I began saying to myself, “I want to ride the part I missed.” Oct 2014 through March 2015, I tried hard to pull things together to ride again for GAiN, but my wife’s need for 3 months of rest after neck surgery put those plans on hold.
You don’t give up. From Sept 2015 to the present, everything has come together — new sponsors, a new driver, another of the original cyclists, Timo, again in partnership with GAiN. In only 16 days, we will continue the dream, supplying more clean drinking water while cycling from Portage-la-Prairie to Quebec City (2800 km).
Next post: the firebrands.