National Kids Cancer Ride

Day 1. White Rock to Kelowna. Some things were meant to be

I’ve done this twice now. So why should i get the collywobbles? I should know how this goes, but someone, somewhere decided to throw me a curveball. That person was Sylvain. Walking though White Rock, I chance encountered a lady walking her dog. We started chatting as we walked. About the Ride, and why we ride. “I lost a son to a brainstorm tumour 21 years ago”, she said. And I stopped dead. What could have possibly have brought her to the beach, at this moment, to meet us. That had to have been Tina’s son, Sylvain. SO something happened for her this morning – she got to share the start ceremonies, with a dedication by Patrick Sullivan, Finn’s father. And our wheel dip, and see us ride out. As we said – losing Sylvain never gets any easier: you just get better at covering it up. But this time she couldn’t. 

Her story broke me. I cried like a baby this morning. I should know what to expect from this, but it got me. TIme to be human again. 

ANd so we rode – both Teams to ABbotsford, where Bob, our teammate’s family had provide refreshments – thank you the Abuja Family.  Now onto new territory for me. We shuttled 100km to Merritt, on the Coquihalla highway. It was smoky – the forest fires in the Rockies smothered the entire area with a pall of smoke, making visibility poor and breathing interesting. They weren’t joking when they said there was a lot of climbing. 8 km of up to start with. Then repeat x 3 more. Toughest day so far. But an amazing team of riders – Bob x 2, Mike x 2, Darryl, Herb, Al, Jane, Rochelle, and me. But what’s a little pain and exhaustion when it’s for a good cause. Our reward – a 21 km descent into Kelowna. 21 awesome kms of down. And then food and showers. THanks once more volunteers and supporters. THey make us human again

So: thoughts of the day? Expect the unexpected. Random meetings lead to random acts of kindness, and those moments touch you so deeply that you are reminded of your humanity and humility time and time again. I have very little protection left right now, so early in the ride. It’s ging to be tough. But it’s what makes me human again. 

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