Saturday, March 3, 2012

Time to Fleche things out....

Funny you should ask about the title.  Yeah I know,  usually when people make bad puns about that springtime tradition among randonneurs they are probably thinking up a team name or something corny like that.  Well, as it turns out,  despite my telling them that I haven't done a lot of riding lately,  I have been invited to join a team for Arizona's first Fleche.   Seeing as all of the team at this point is Mormon it looks like we are going to be team Mormon Battalion.  Named after that hardy group of folks who are credited with making the longest infantry march in US history as they crossed the southwest on their way to San Diego where they arrived shortly after the Mexican American war had ended dusty but no worse for the wear. 

Huh?  some of you don't know what a Fleche is?  Well,  let me illucidate.  A Fletch is a team event (yes,  Randonneuring does in fact have team events).   It covers at least 360k in 24 hours and at least 3 of the team must finish together.   All the teams arrive at the finish close to the same time and then have breakfast as they discuss their exploits before the time catches up with them and they drift off to exhausted sleep.  For some reason the French decided it has to be around Easter.  So, we have an Easter Bunny and apparently their version is a baggy eyed, sweaty, stinky cyclist.  I don't know why it has to be around Easter.  Perhaps it's an understanding suffering thing?  If so, I far prefer it to the practice of Crucifying oneself, wearing a hairshirt, or making a pilgrimmage on one's knees across I can't walkistan.  Ok, enough on various ways a fella can hurt himself in the name of devotion to something.   Although I suppose Randonneuring does have it's similarities as far as pain and discomfort go at times.

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