It’s been a year since I have written anything on this blog. I am not going to make one of those, oh I’ve been busy, oh life got in the way excuses, because that is not the reason why. As we know, I don’t dance around awkward subjects. Honestly, I had nothing to write and didn’t give a flying psyduck as to if anyone really cared.
A few weeks back I was speaking with Scott Johnson, about this drought. (Did I really need to link to Scott? Probably not, but he’s a pretty cool guy if you didn’t know him.) I lost the desire to write, I lost the desire to talk about diabetes, I just had nothing to share. So I stopped. When Scott and I were talking he said something of real importance to me, “We write because we want to write, it’s not for anyone else but ourselves.” Why should I stress if I haven’t written anything? Which was so true. So I had to wait until my voice was ready to say something else. I think I have a few ideas or posts in my head. Maybe.
But today I am back to where I stopped writing. I am back at the JDRF Ride to Cure Diabetes in La Crosse, Wisconsin. Today is August 11th, which is day one of things to come. While this post will not be published until the 15th/16th most likely. I thought I would write about things as they happen, each day. Almost like a diary or some shit like that.
Sorry guys I’m committed to this idea at this point. I woke up early to head out to La Crosse, after going to bed around midnight, since I hadn’t packed yet. I was out of my house by 3:00 AM. I was tired, but it wasn’t horrible. The rest of the day was filled with travel, check-in, etc. Since I got here a little after 11:00 AM, I had to wait. So I wandered the town. This really is a beautiful area. The rest of the day was filled with normal registration for the ride and dinner.
I met up with some of the fellow riders from my chapter and we chatted during dinner. One of our team, Carly Orden was giving a small talk on why she rides, other than the obvious. The last thing she said at the end of her talk was about the hook the ride leaves in you. Why do you come out and why do you come back? Because you want to, the family atmosphere, the friends you make, #bikeface, and so on, it leaves it’s mark. This is why she comes back. This is why many of us come back.
I’ll be honest after last year’s ride I avoided my bike, I trained so hard to hit that 100 miles that when she came back to New Jersey, I didn’t want to look at her anymore. But that is another story or later in the post.
I came back this year because of the people, because of the ride, but most of all for the reason all of us ride, to help in finding the cure to type 1 diabetes.
After the dinner I wandered down to the river, this is another reason why I love riding out in this area. The view.
Well it is 10:19 PM or for me 11:19 PM. I am kinda tired. Goodnight diary, until tomorrow.
I am already regretting this “dear diary theme”, however, I need to finish this. Day 2 started out rough for me. Nothing to do with the ride, but with a 2:30 AM phone call from the alarm company telling me that somewhere in the church the system is reporting low battery. I don’t consider that to be an emergency and frankly being woken up at 2:30 AM on little sleep from the previous day, I was not a pleasant person.
The rest of the day was good, started with breakfast, met a new person from Iowa we chatted for a bit. Moved on to the opening remarks and rules for the ride. After that there was a tune up ride, to check out to make sure things were reassembled properly and stuff like that. Took Blue out for her ride, came back, and wandered the town for a bit. I had jalapeño cheese curds for lunch… In the afternoon there were different sessions you could attend if you wanted to. Bike maintenance, cycling 101, managing type 1 on the ride… Some great stuff, if you wanted to go to it. I went to some of the sessions.
The pre-ride dinner was pretty awesome, good food, good talk, stuff like that. Brian Herrick from NYC talked a bit about his experience with a bionic pancreas, but also how it was through JDRF funding some of these pivotal trials have happened and their continued support of a brighter future for a world without type 1. We talked about a few other things the importance of Mile 23, where we ride in silence as we remember those in our community we have lost, and the reasons why we ride. Every year this moment chokes me up a little. But truly how important it is to find that cure.
Some awards were given out to most new riders recruited, top corporate team, top fundraising chapter, top fundraisers. The number one fundraiser for this ride has raised over $42,000 for this ride. Since he started riding this ride 5 years ago, he has raised over $300,000. Did I mention the fact that he is 86 years old and still riding strong? Because of people like him this ride will raise over $1 million dollars. Since it’s beginning the JDRF Ride program has raised over $80 Million for type 1 diabetes research.
As I curl up to go to bed I leave you with these thoughts, “it’s not about the miles it’s the smiles.” All of you should consider doing a ride like this. I will say it again tomorrow night too.
I leave you with a parting picture again. Apparently my chapter had a rider in the top fundraiser category.
While we one day may be able to find a cure for type 1 diabetes, there is no finding a cure for what that guy has…
Thank you for your donations and support this year.
(I am still fine tuning this post. Or you can read it as lazy. I will have it up tomorrowish, but I wanted to at least keep you hooked.)