Late Saturday afternoon, I put on my jeans and rode my antique three speed over to the grocery store in Woodstock. After shopping, I drove my cart out to the bike rack and transferred the panniers onto the bike before unlocking. My receipt flapped away at the bottom of the cart and I left it.
A tall gentleman in Castelli knickers walked up to the rack, almost tripping over my front wheel. He locked up his road bike, with its Brooks saddle and randonneur-style bag, and swiftly scooped my receipt out of the cart. I marveled at how interested he appeared to be in this little piece of paper that revealed nothing more than how much I like expensive chocolate.
"Oh, you've found my receipt. Is there anything of interest on it?". He looked up and told me he'd just finished the ride. I am used to strangers finding me familiar, as I believe it's one of my overriding qualities, but he actually knew my name. "The ride?" I asked.
Turns out, this was the chap who had requested to ride my permanent route, the PAP or Portland-Aumsville-Portland. He was looking at the receipt because he thought he might use it as control proof instead of going into the store.
He looked fresh as a daisy but insisted it had been a hard nine hour day. My best 200k time is ten hours. We chatted about the route, which he said was a nice easy choice for winter, and then we went our separate ways.