Wednesday, June 10, 2009

The Eternal Optimist

Growing up my father had a record of Dr. Murray Banks who was pop psychologist at the time, and who told a story of 2 brothers, the pessimist and the optimist.  Their father was concerned about this diversity so he takes some serious measures, and for the optimist he is told to give him a room full of manure to cure his joyfulness.  The boy walks into the rooms and in a shriek of glee screams " oh my  goodness a room full of can't fool me, where there is this much manure, there has to be a pony".  
I saw myself in that boy, I was the optimist.
I thought of that during the Tour de L'isle as we reached KM 50 and in front of us was the hill at Berri.  People shouted from the sidelines in encouragement, I gritted by teeth, and pedaled as fast as I could.  I was going to make it up that hill, my personal pile of manure!  
This was a great cycling weekend.  My goals were attained.  Saturday I wanted to do 40kms and again in a weird turn of fate, just prior to leaving the house I had a little online chat with Tracy that was both inspiring and encouraging.  I jokingly told her that I was going to ride from my area to Beaconsfield and back.  Truthfully, I had no idea how far that was, but I did know that it was "car far".  So I set out and made a mental commitment to do 20kms in each direction or to go as far as the Beaconsfield sign, whichever is further.  As luck would have it at 2okms I was at Tracy's street, and the coincidence was not lost on me.  I rode around the crescent and turned around to head home.  Another time that fate smiled upon me.  I really enjoy riding alone, it gives me the time to clear my mind and enjoy the beauty of our city.  
Note to self: Don't try to clip into your bike as you are heading downhill into oncoming traffic, I fell again.
The next morning were the throngs of people for the Tour de L'isle. This was to be my first 50+ ride.  "That's not casual".  So I entered the fray, and set off on my personal goal to finish the ride in a respectable time.  The Tour is actually a celebration of riding and once I was able to separate myself from the masses, I enjoyed the freedom of riding through the streets completely oblivious to stop lights and signs.  Free to ride, free to challenge myself, free to embrace my optimism.  2.5 hours later mission accomplished, and I am happy to report relatively unscathed.  Sore, you better believe it, but still convinced that on September 11th I will nail the 100kms with the gang.  For the record I rode a total 62.1 kms.
I am happy to report that I have reached 1/3 of my fundraising goals thanks to your generous donations.  I guess I could see the cup as 2/3 empty but that is not in my personality.   
A little bit stubborn, okay more than a little bit controlling, but really fundamentally I remain the eternal optimist.  If I wasn't I never would have put on the lycra in the first place.
So stay tuned as I try to break my next goal of 70 kms.  Please support Cedars and my ride by  sponsoring us at and feel free to tell friends about the blog.  I have received some wonderful emails from cancer patients who feel empowered by the journey.  Thank you for your kind comments.

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