FINALLY!! I was able to make it to Bicycle Johns, the worlds greatest bike shop, to get the bottom bracket issue that had side lined me since the previous Tuesday. Despite my excitement I decided not to ride. I had a few things to do, but was still going to get my usual meal in to prep for the ride. Unfortunately the meal plan didn't work out and I ended up at Shakeys with my friends. 3 slices of pizza, 4 pieces of fried chicken, a pile of mojos and a pitcher of beer later and I was ready to hit the sack. My biggest concern at this point was that I had to get up at 6 to make it to Ventura in time for Scott's and my ride. Getting up proved to not be a problem as I popped up off the couch Saturday morning at 5:45 a.m. After my drive to Ventura Scott and I got on the road. Riding his route is always something I look forward to. The route is nice and fast for parts, we get to ride on the 101, and then there is some great, steep but short climbing in the foothills around Montecito. Saturday proved to be a perfect day as the sun was kept at bay by a nice cloud cover for most of the ride. This kept the temperature cool until we got back on PCH towards the end of the ride. The sun finally came out in the last 5 miles, burning my inconsistently protected skin. Sunday's ride was a bit more on every level. More pre-ride preparation, more miles, more climbing, more attacks and more speed! Sunday I rode to Sherman Oaks from Burbank to meet Christian in Sherman Oaks. Our plan was to ride from his house to the beach via the Chandler bike path and Topanga Canyon. From there were were going to head up Sepulveda pass and Mullholland, then head down Coldwater canyon back to his place. after a moderate pace with frequent attacks by the man in Chuck Taylors we made it to Balboa Park. It was at this point we had to turn around to swap tires as Christian sliced the back. This added about 8 miles to our ride and put us back about 30 minutes but whatever, I need to get more miles on anyway. We made it to Topanga and after a short break we started the climb. I was setting a quicker than normal pace and started to lose Christian. After realizing this, and the fact that I couldn't hold that pace I slowed it up. The road was hot, and at one point I remember asking Mother Earth to please turn off her hair dryer. She did and we made it to the top a-o.k. Going down Topanga was the first massive, steep descent I'd done on the new bike and It was crazy. I've never had the wind blow me around on the road, but with the new deeper dish wheels and the super light carbon frame I could feel myself being blown around. That was a completely new and somewhat annoying sensation. We made it to the beach, took a break to drink a Redbull, and then rolled out. About 5 miles later both of us realized that drinking warm Redbull on a 70 mile ride is not a good idea. Sepulveda Pass was hot, and much longer than I remember from two weeks earlier. At one point I thought I had a flat tire, but it turned out that I was just really tired and my legs weren't moving. By the time we got back to the Valley I was cooked. I started to cramp about a mile from Christian's house. I took a short break at his place before getting back on my trusty steed to roll back to Burbank. When the job was done I hopped in the shower and ate a piece of fried chicken... at the same time.