Sunday, October 14, 2007

The Last Ride ... and A Bit of Japan in New Mexico

I leave for Saipan tomorrow.

Today we did our final ride, ride number 15 in 14 days. Today's ride was a nice and easy road climb up the hill from Santa Fe to the Ten Thousand Waves Spa. We deserve it, don't you think? Rou's wife Mary met us at the spa so she could enjoy it with us and also so we didn't have to ride home.

The ride turned out to be a really good uphill climb, as the spa sits on top of the ridge on the way up to the mountains from Santa Fe. We rode 16.6 miles, and climbed 1,460 feet in an hour and 13 minutes. It was a gradual climb for the most part, so we maintained a good pace.
What made it most enjoyable was the fact that as we were climbing up the road, the drivers of three separate cars honked and waved or gave us the thumbs up as they passed in the opposite direction. I can only assume they were fellow bikers trying to help us up the hill with their encouragement. I can't tell you how many times I've been honked at or yelled at in a negative way, just for riding along and minding my own business, so it was great to be riding in a city that's so biker-friendly.

The spa was amazing and can only be described as a little bit of Japan in New Mexico. They have private outdoor spas, so for an hour we had a small patio with a hot spa, a cold spa, and our own private dry sauna. It was strange, in a way, to see all the Japanese style in New Mexico, but it also felt a bit like my home back in Saipan. They even had my favorite Japanese chocolate covered bread-stick candies!

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