Monday morning 07:00 and we roll off towards Washington DC. The ride commences and the minutes of training will all be behind us.
Sunday was to be an easy day. A relatively late start with breakfast at a leisurely 08:30 with a mix of the Ohio crew and others. For this week Lisa (from Ontario) and I are part of the Ohio team. There are seven of us either from Ohio or riding with them.
Both Lisa and myself were recruited to the Police Unity Tour by Michael T Rae. Lisa had the good fortune to be stood next to Michael and I at last year’s Candlelight Vigil in Washington. She is a runner who hadn’t ridden a bike until last October.
We then spent some time reassembling our bikes which had been disassembled to fit in the bike boxes to be flown to the USA.We also helped out fellow riders who did not know how to assemble bikes and who had not been on the Police Unity Tour before. After assembling my bike and fixing the obligatory puncture in my bike, caused by a defective repair to a previous blowout (mea culpa).
We then had a brief ride down the road to check the bikes were ok. We rode only 3 miles, but that was enough to test out the problems and fix them. This took us up to shortly after 12 noon.
Now we could register for the ride and collect our bike numbers, luggage tags, hotel details and our 15th Anniversary Polo Shirts. Something to wear with pride.
We dropped our bike off and went to the function room where the kit could be collected and there were stalls selling various memorabilia. The 2011 Cycling kit which must be worn on the 1st and last days was available for collection.
THE FRONT VIEW
THE REAR VIEW
THE REAR POCKET IN DETAIL
THE SLEEVE DETAIL (the Twin Towers & The Pentagon)
Apart from the issue of riding with a US Flag on my shirt, I think the shirts are great. So much so that I bought a 2nd one that Harry Philips, the organiser found for me. Cheers Harry.
Sunday afternoon brought a chance to speak to Michelle via the video call facility on MSN Messenger. Its always good to chat to Michelle, but it is so much better to see her as well. It was 19:00 in UK, but only 14:00 here. So as Michelle relaxed with a glass of wine, I still had not had my lunch.
This evening, there was a buffet provided for all the riders staying in the hotel and a chance to meet friends from last year and to meet new friends. The event as ever is such an uplifting experience.
Breakfast tomorrow (Monday) is at 05:00 – 06:30, but we have to have our luggage out by 06:00. We are then on the road at 07:00. Heading into New York City and Ground Zero before heading back again via the Holland Tunnel to New Jersey where we will eventually end up in Edison NJ and a reception at Albert’s Palace. Where we start, end and go via the exact route may differ as this is shown for cars.
PS Congratulations to Darlington FC & Whitley Bay FC for their Wembley wins this weekend.