An Unforgettable Day
I'm at Saul Raisin's home in Dalton, Georgia right now. We've had many wonderful adventures over the last few days but today (12/15) tops them all. Saul and I rode from Dalton to Ellijay and back. The distance is nearly 100 miles. Fort Mountain, a tough eight mile climb, is in the way. In addition, the "flat" terrain is actually mostly one big roller after another. It took us a little under 6.5 hours.
I rode the bike Saul was on when he crashed in April during the Circuit de la Sarthe, and did his early rehabilitation on as well. What an incredible machine! It's the best bike I've ever thrown a leg over, and it has some amazing history to boot.
We talked much of the time about stories relating to the book we are writing together. The more detail I learn the more amazing this story becomes.
I also want to report that Saul is doing incredibly well. He has a heart of gold and a will of iron. More than anyone else I've ever met, he was born to ride a bike. His bicycle gives him wings, both physically and emotionally. I agree with him that many medical professionals have vastly underestimated the healing power of these magical machines. Saul's bicycle is one of the primary explainations behind his miraculous recovery. A few of the others are his wonderful family, his supportive team, his fans and the prayers they sent his way, the medical professionals who first saved his life and then gave him back his strength, and his innate desire to prove the impossible really is possible. Never give Saul a challenge unless it's something you'd like to see accomplished.
If you're wondering how well I did on the ride, wonder no more. Other than a two hour ride we took together yesterday, this is my first ride of more than an hour since my birthday in October when I rode the spectacular Moab Century. To say that was overmatched is an understatement. He can ramp it up to 400 watts and stay there for as long as he wants. He tells me that since his injury, on the bike he feels no pain. To say that I'm exhausted is ajg4583&)!oriHJ[0'W0
Whoops. Sorry, I just fell asleep on the keyboard.
I've got to go now. I need to ask Saul's dad, Jim, if he would be willing to rig a harness to lower me down to the main floor for breakfast in the morning.I wonder how I'm going to get down the stairs to breakfast in the morning. The thought of walking down those stairs is too frightening to face.