Last night I biked out to one of Austin, Texas’s brew pubs, where they make their own beer. Cold but dry after rain early in the day, it was not long but I had the bike rack all to myself. Riders from the recent Mamma Jamma Ride which I was part of on September 22, 2018 were invited to have a free cold one, socialize with others, and pick up their gift bags or some extra goodies. I decided to ride over and join in. And you can join me for this little night cap. I mean recap. Tee many martoonis, sorry! Just kidding.
I attended the event to be part of the community, not because of free beer, which is not much of a motivator for me. As fathlete bicyclist I prefer my carbs in solid form, ideally with some sort of chocolate involved. While none of that was available, there was free popcorn, one of the three whole grain snacks I allow myself. I actually tried to give my beverage away but wasn’t successful until John and Chris obliged.
We shared one of Austin Beerworks German beers, the Einhorn Berliner Weisse. It’s very light and almost fruity. At only 3% alcohol, The affable bar man, bedecked in a Mamma Jamma t-shirt, described it as being made for bicyclists in Berlin after bike rides when they didn’t want something too heavy. (This beer’s for you, Miss Schade, a fellow blogger and bicyclist in Berlin. I’m waiting on that guest post, Stephanie!)
Chris and I had met before, at a training ride for the 2017 BP MS 150 in Lockhart. John I had seen on the ride and last year’s training rides, being a spouse of Marty. Other attendees were Nada, who’s the board chair and greeted me with a nice hug; her brother Roy; Anne, a board member I got a post-ride massage next to, and Shea, yet another board member.
Marion, the director, was there of course. I saw Jeb, with whom I’d ridden; now we’re Strava buddies. We may go riding soon if the weather ever turns dry and sunny again. Others I didn’t recognize came and went, and so I didn’t see many folks, but I had arrived toward the end. I had missed David “Safety Dave” Walker, who has done SAG the last two years. The man is damn speedy, on a bike or in a car, that’s for sure!
I switched my black t-shirt for a lighter heather purple one, and got two extras for my main $300 donors, Bill and Lee, and turned in a small but no less appreciated donation from Elizabeth. After some conversation and recollections about the ride, the event wound down. I put on my gloves, hat, helmet and jacket, grateful to not have to add poncho, rain pants, and shoe covers.
Returning home, I reflected on the community of charity riders. I asked someone what brought them to the ride, and they said “It’s personal. Breast cancer hit our family. So we ride.” I asked how his wife was doing, and he said well, she is in remission and moving ahead with life. So I was reminded of the sobering fact that 1 in 8 women still get diagnosed with breast cancer, and some do not survive, but many do and thrive. And I did my small part to help fund the treatment for some of them. Either a wig for when their hair falls out in chemotherapy; a mastectomy bra for after an operation; counseling for themselves or their kids; or any number of other services that the Mamma Jamma Ride supports — all are necessary supports.
If you’re a survivor, I honor you. And if you’re undergoing treatment, I wish you healing. If you’re a donor to my ride, thank you. And if you’re none of those, why not take a moment to join several dozen other people who have given over $2,200 so far? To donate to my 40-mile bike ride in the wind, rain and heat, with loose dogs chasing, a flat tire, all on my 28-pound steel bike with 9 gears on just 4.5 hours of sleep, go to this secure link and do your best. Thanks!
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