Last Sunday’s Morden ride was a total success for all concerned. The start was a little tentative as it sprinkled rain when Rob and Ron left Steinbach to meet up with Jim in Kleefeld. With a bit of a headwind Rob did a fine job of drafting Ron until they found Jim, who was busy helping “Nikita” the blonde Russian bombshell and her boyfriend look for their wallet on the side of the road with the stray dog they had picked up while walking around all night. The wallet was found, the boyfriend fetched his car, the blonde and the dog jumped in the back, Jim sent them off with a teacherly admonishment to go home and sleep, and the three MIT’ers continued their epic journey to Morden. Rob turned back at Hwy 205. Jim and Ron picked up Neil at Hwy 205 and 59 (just past St Pierre). By now the sky was getting a little lighter and it began to look hopeful off to the west. Turning off of Hwy 59 and into the great barren plain that is Hwy 23 between St Malo and Morris, the trio formed an echelon to battle a moderate head wind for the next 40 KM’s. Jim’s legendary strength was put to the test hauling his cargo of paniers (did he think this trip would take a week?), which ultimately resulted in his being pronounced “Jimmy-Two-Sacks” by Neil after about 125 KM’s of lugging that load. About 8 KM’s east of Morris Andy met up with the trio, having ridden out from Morden earlier that morning and setting a blistering average speed for the 60 KM ride. Now the peloton was complete for the remainder of the ride. We pulled into Subway around 9:30AM for a yummy breakfast (who knew?) and stayed just long enough for the clouds to clear and warm sun to come out. Breakfast resulted in yet another pronouncement by Shorty, this time it was RJ who was dubbed “Ronny-Two-Shorts”. I forget what all the conversation was, but we left Subway with belly’s full of food and laughter. After this point the ride just kept getting better and better. The highway traffic was light, the crosswind was steady, but our echelon was effective and moved along at a steady 30 kph (even the burdened “Jimmy-Two-Sacks” kept the pace). The final capper to a great ride was the final 20 KM’s heading South down Rosebank road to Morden. With the wind at our backs we streaked along effortlessly, barely feeling the 125 KM’s of effort already expended. By 1:30 we were sipping beer and snarfing pretzles on Andy’s patio. The computer said 151 KM’s, 5 hours 5 minutes riding time, 6 hours 30 minutes elapsed time, just over 29 kph average. But those are just numbers, the road was good, the weather was very good, the company was great, and the folk fest was just icing on the cake. Thanks guys! Next ride…August 24th – Morden Corn & Apple Festival!