As late as Wednesday, Sunday’s forecast called for 70’s with mostly sunny skies. We were quite excited, given last year’s deluge which you can still read about in our 2013 Tour de Cure Ride Report. However, as of Thursday morning our company’s executive sponsor noted the forecast had gone south on us and it now called for a 70% chance of showers with temps in the upper 50’s to low 60’s; really!? So, Saturday became something of a “weather watch” for Sunday’s outlook down in the ride area and to say it was “iffy” would have been about right. As late at midnight there was what looked to be a window of opportunity for the 8:30am start, so long as we could be off the roads by 11:00am, which meant going out on the 65 mile route, but cutting it a bit short so as to avoid another rain-soaked finish… and that was our plan when we went to bed.
We woke up to thunder and rain at our home, some 30 miles North of where the ride would be starting. I went and checked the radar and interestingly enough, the rain was pretty much all North of Interstate 20 and our ride routes. Debbie wasn’t all that excited about the prospect of getting rained on, but she indulged me and we were out the door before 7:00am so that we’d arrive well before the 8:30am start of the 65-mile route. I’d already “checked-in” for the ride this past Friday at the local Sports Authority, which was great. Moreover, our company jerseys were distributed on Wednesday, so all we had to do was show-up and be at the starting line on time.
As we drove South we kept expecting to see dryer roads, but that wasn’t the case. There had apparently been wide-spread rain across the area and with the humidity still relatively high, cloudy skies, no wind and temps in the upper 50’s there just wasn’t a chance for the roads to dry-out. But, they weren’t soaked so we were still committed to making the start.
After dropping off $740.00 of our contributions that were made by personal checks, we found our company tent, said hello to the folks who were on hand and discussed the day’s ride options and plans. The skies to the North and West looked a bit threatening, but we continued to make preparations for the start and rolled-up to the queue area around 8:15am. As they began the various festivities word came that they’d decided to postpone the start for 30 minutes due to lightning in the area and with that we could also feel rain starting to fall. We opted to go back to the truck instead of to our company tent, not knowing just how hard or how long the rain would be falling, as my Verizon phone couldn’t pick up a signal so that I could check the latest radar. Once we were back at the truck the skies opened up for a few minutes, during which time I was able to get a good signal and see the weather radar. What we were experiencing appeared to be something of a rogue finger of strong weather that poked down across I-20 from the weather system moving to the East, after which it didn’t appear that there was all that much rain coming for the area where the ride routes would be taking us.
However, in retrospect, heading 200 yards back to the dry and warm comfort of our truck was probably the coup de grace for our day on the bike at this year’s Tour de Cure. As we sat there talking about our ride plans I could see Debbie was not looking forward to the ride or, more to the point, the prospect of a cold and most-likely wet ride. I didn’t want to push her into something that she wouldn’t enjoy, but also had to check and make sure she just didn’t need a little encouragement. However, as we sat there chatting I realized the 30-minute delay was now looking more like a 20-minute delay as it became apparent the riders were queued back up and getting ready to depart. One last look at my sweet Miss Debbie told me that she’d do anything I’d ask, but that she really wasn’t up for a cold, wet ride. So, we both took the miscalculation as an omen that we were better off just packing it in and celebrating what was still a very successful fund-raising effort.
All told, our mileage may have been zero but our $400 combined with the $2,632.00 we received from seventy-one generous & caring friends allowed us to provide the American Diabetes Association with $3,032 in funding to support their good work.
Again, our heart-felt thanks to the friends from fourteen states as far away as Arizona who made it all possible:
- Deb & David F, GA (Partners in Crime)
- Bob & Carrie Ann B, GA (‘Biker’ Friends)
- Lisa & Paul W, GA (Tandem Friends)
- Ashton & Renee P, MS (Tandem Friends)
- Kevin & Linda V, TX (Tandem Friends)
- Eve K & Roger S, GA (Tandem Friends)
- Betsy & John P, IL (My Big Sister!)
- Nancy & Johnny W, GA (LM Friends)
- Randy & Chris J, KY (Tandem Friends)
- Linda & Bill A, GA (LM Friends)
- Debbie & Joe M, TN (Tandem Friends)
- Greg & Angie K, FL (Tandem Friends)
- Ed & Cindy R, GA (LM Friends)
- Oscar & Lucy T, TN (Tandem Friends)
- Mary & Ken B, FL (Tandem Friends)
- Mark & Tracy W, GA (LM Friends)
- Jim & Diana M, GA (LM Friends)
- Shan & Eddie C, GA (LM Friends)
- Scott & Beth C, GA (LM Friends)
- Duncan & Laura M, SC (Tandem Friends)
- Kanwal M & Diane A, CA (LM Friends)
- Kurt & Sloan M, GA (LM Friends)
- John & Margaret G, MN (Tandem Friends)
- Cheryl F & Tom G, PA (Tandem Friends)
- Lisa & George S, GA (LM Friends)
- Marvin & Mary B, IL (Tandem Friends)
- Cathy & Tracey T, TN (Tandem Friends)
- Tony & Kay C, GA (LM Friends)
- Al & Heidi P, FL (Tandem Friends)
- Max & Catherine M, GA (LM Friends)
- Dan & Bevin, O, CO (Tandem Friends)
- Ross & Donna G, MD (Tandem Friends)
- Tom & Melody B, GA (LM Friends)
- Dr. Mark & Laura R, AZ (Tandem Friends)
- Sandra B, GA (“Twisted” Friend)
- Stephanie & John S, GA (LM Friends)