Thursday, July 9, 2015

Goodbye Magnificent Kona

I remember the first day I saw you, it was October 30th, 2010.  It was love at first sight. You were stunningly shiny and I was dressed like Peat Henry.

Which one is Peat? FYI, never glue hair to your face.

 I had no idea how to ride you but  felt comfortable that we would survive pedaling in circles for about 30 minutes.  I was not familiar with shifting gears and did not do well in the race.  It didn't matter. You would not be seeing many cross races.  You were purchased for an entirely different purpose.  You and I were going to crush the Dirty Kanza 200 in 2011!

Your first battle scar

Time has passed so quickly and here we are almost five years later.  I have enjoyed over 15,000 miles of road, trail, and gravel with you.  You have taken me on rides with my husband, my daughter and countless friends. We have enjoyed rides to school for lunch and rides to the store to pick up a few things.  I have experienced incredible amounts of joy and happiness but also been through crazy Hell, you were right there with me. Our relationship was mostly pleasure that was sprinkled intermittently with Pain, several events come to mind.

Dirty Kanza 2013

You were always ready for a rumble no matter the time of day or the weather conditions.  Know that I winced every time I had to roll you through animal feces.  And yet, your attitude remained stellar! You never let me down in a race and always gave 150%, no matter the circumstances.  In fact, we never had any serious mechanical issues and very few flats over the years. You have maintained a sound mind and body.  By the way...  I changed only ONE flat in those three races, all 600 miles! You are THE reason I finished my first three Dirty Kanza's!  You are magnificent and I am indebted to you for life.  I will never forget the gifts you have given me and the adventures we shared.

I took you everywhere

You know all my secrets, I told you EVERYTHING, unfiltered, and unafraid.  Like who were you going to tell?  You know my deepest fears, my innermost crazy thoughts, and all the bullshit I have carried around with me for the last 46 years.  Thanks for being a super confidant and being an awesome listener. I know my nuttiness is safe with you. I also appreciate you not minding the times I left tears on your top tube.  You were there for me through some important times/issues in my life.  You didn't leave my side when things got rough.  You impacted my life in an immeasurable way , yet you never uttered a word.

I know you were pissed to see the Warbird land in the garage.  I understand.  I get it.  I realize it must have been hard to watch me fawn over him, buy him stuff and take him on rides all the while hanging helplessly from the wall.  Don't think I haven't felt guilty. Don't think I haven't thought how you might feel. Also... Don't think I haven't heard your silent digs "hey bitch, ride me" as I rolled the Warbird out of the garage. I'm sorry those moments happened and I hope you know I didn't mean anything by it.  My guilt was lessened as I began to look for a good/proper home for you.  You are marvelous and deserve to be ridden. I was on a mission to find you the perfect place.

With the help of friends you now have a new home and owner.  His name is Robert.  He is a Middle School teacher.  He resides in..... wait for it..... Emporia, Kansas!!!  I know!  How lucky are you!?

You get to grind gravel in Kansas! The Flint Hills Baby!!  I know how much fun you had out there and how you hated to leave after riding the Dirty Kanza course. You know what else?   You may even see some of our friends and get to ride with them.  I will have them send me photos so I can see how you are faring.  Try not to smile so big alright?

I want you to know that I felt extremely sad as I wrapped your bars with new tape. Don't worry, I left that extra tape just where your new owner will appreciate it.   I know you are going to a fabulous home, the fella and his wife are friends of Kristi Mohn, make sure to tell her"Hi" for me.  I think you have arrived just in time to give the Lunar Kanza a go!   You lucky bastard!  I looked at the registered rider list and you would be in awesome company if you get to go.  I already sent your new rider an email to get registered, fingers crossed.

I should wrap things up here so you can get on with your life.  Lastly I want you to know that you are a very special bike so hold your very head high in Kansas.   Not many bikes have three full DK200's on them.  That is something to be proud of since most bikes will never see the beauty of the Flint Hills.  I'm honored to have had you in my life for as long as I did.  Now go make Robert happy, show him as much gravel as he can handle, and then show him some more.

I will be in Emporia on June 3rd 2016, I hope to see you then if not sooner.

I will miss you.  Behave.

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