Thursday, December 4, 2008

Putrajaya Critical Mass. November 28, 2008

I arrived around 2030 at the Mamak Double Trouble at Precint 9 and I did not see anybody on bike or with bike in sight. The rain had stopped so I was pretty sure the PCM was on but if we were to roll off at 2100 surely there already at least few people around already. I parked and walked around a bit and then only I saw a rider riding around, obviously, trying to find cycling soul mate. Seeing him I went into a mamak sundry shop to buy two bottles of 100 plus.

As I was walking back to the Ranger I saw Kol cycling searching I gave my salam. That surely indicated the PCM is on so I got ready and unloaded my bike.

Kol and I stand with our bikes at the curb watching cyclist slowly trickling in. It was then obvious to me we were not going to roll off anytime soon. Had it was not my first PCM I would have rolled off on my own. MBA brought free t-shirts courtesy of REDTone for our group. I met the rest of what was known for that night the REDTone riders. Abedib and other SDARAs decided to skip this PCM and I am lucky that I cycled with Alif, Shahrin, Kol, MBA, and Taufik before so I did not feel alone that night.

We eventually rolled off close to 2200 after a brief briefing from the organizer. I purposely did not bring my camera as I wanted to enjoy my ride. We rode slowly out in group out of Precint 9 towards Dataran Putra for our first stop. During the briefing it was made very clear that the PCM is a community ride for everyone to enjoy, safety is paramount and no speeding. With the roadies with their high performance bicycle I wondered how long that going to last. Well their patient lasted until Alamanda when most of them sped up the climb and blazed their way towards PICC. The Marshall caught upwith them and they eventually waited for the other groups to at least in decent size before we rolled off again and this time they had no intention to slow down or stop and sped towards Precint 9. I was initially with the group in the middle and having an easy ride. However when we got to the climb at Alamanda knowing that a major group would find the climb a bit tough I sped off trying to catch up with the leading group. With my bike I knew it was a futile effort but I just went off with my own pace. Along the way I met a fellow REDTone rider and chatted as we cycled. We shared the shame predicament pf not being a serious cyclist early. He was surprised that I have a 21 year-old son at home. We continued to cycle and chat until we saw the first group waiting at the top of a small climb. I hate to stop in the middle of a ride when I was already in a nice rhythm. But I knew I must stop and waited together. It was then already half past eleven.

At the PICC I decided to hit it and go home straight away once I reached Precint 9. I told Kol who was then already cycling with us that it was too late for me to join them for a Teh Tarik after the ride and would want to proceed home immediately. With that I sped off alone all the way to Precint 9. It was just few minutes after midnight when I got there. Since I had to bowl the next day I immediately loaded the bike and drove home.

I enjoyed my first PCM. Had we rolled off early I would have rode easy and stayed back to chat with other cyclists to get to know them. I do think that my PT buddies would not like the PCM but I would do it again in the future. Most of the riders are season roadies and MTBs with their near sophisticated machines. But there are rooms for beginners like me who were there just to have a nice ride and trying to get to understand their bike better. But one thing that we can definitely improve is to start on time.

Thank you everyone for the company and till we meet again in the next PCM.

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