Archive for December, 2013

Tobin Munn from Trinidad

I started riding with the CCC team in the summer of 2011 after moving from Houston to Cairo.  The thought of riding around the streets of Cairo was daunting, and I still recall how nervous I was the morning of my first ride.  I thought that this group had to be collectively insane, and I was sure of it when we first turned onto the infamous Ring Road!  After I passed through this apprehensive stage, I began to discover actually how pleasant, peaceful, enjoyable the riding was outside the city – on the highway to Suhkna, in the hilly streets of Kattemeya, or Mt Makkatem, and of course the epic rides to Porto Suhkna and the Observatory.  Everyone in the club is friendly – I really miss the camaraderie and post-ride coffee at Greco’s.  Unfortunately we were moved quickly out of Egypt (during our vacation)!  So I didn’t get a chance to say farewell. 

 I am now here in warm, humid, and rainy Trinidad.  There are only two seasons in Trinidad – wet and dry – so I needed to acclimatize a bit coming from hot and dusty Egypt.  Mostly I have been doing short rides (30 – 40 miles) out around the Chagauramas park in the northwest side of the island.  They have several competitive cycling clubs here, but a little bit more extreme than CCC so I don’t think I am keen on joining any..  I recently completed the “Around de Island” ride, which recorded at about 135 miles on Strava if you want to check it out.  I was a little nervous before the ride because I have done no significant distance riding since my abrupt departure from Egypt, other than a few mountain stages in the French Alps this past August.  I think my previous PR was ~110 miles solo ride (in sneakers on a rental bike) around Lake Geneva a couple of years ago.  With a very large peloton ~80 riders and a pretty slow average pace of 27 km, I was surprised how relatively easy it was to conserve energy and just keep pedaling along.  The weather also cooperated, somewhat… it was cloudy/rainy most of the time so the temperature was pleasant. 

 The picture is at the second stop in a little village of Mayaro on the southeast coast, with me proudly donning my CCC jersey.   The other riders nicknamed me “Egypt boy”.  The last two hours was difficult as we had to slog through torrential rain coming back to Port of Spain, but I think this was probably a blessing helped keep the fatigue, dehydration, cramping, etc. at bay.   Almost 7-1/2 hours on the saddle!

 Take care everyone, ride safe, and have fun.

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