On my last day of competition, I won gold again. This was something of an inglorious win, as there were only five women competing in the mountainbike short course, each in a different age group. Last time I competed in this event, I was the only woman in my age division, and won gold for finishing last, tho I was up against some truly fearsome women. This time I came second last, beating only a septuagenarian on a Malvern Star. The track was a lot more technical than the previous short course, and I had to slow right down to my normal speed to complete the first half, switchbacks through some rocky terrain.
But the important thing is that I did it, although the race I'm most pleased with was completing three laps of the mountainbike cross-country course. It's good just to be a woman competing in this sport, because not many women do. I was talking about this to a fellow female mountainbiker at the airport, about how I knew so many far more co-ordinated and sporty women than me who tried mountainbiking once and said 'never again'. She said that it was because sporty people were used to everything coming easily to them, and that this was a sport that didn't, in which you had to take some initial knockbacks and be prepared to fall (quite literally). I think the sports you gravitate towards reflect personality and I do see some parallels between mountainbiking and yoga, which favour strength, persistence, focus and technical skills. Both of them involve a fair amount of mind over matter (quite literally; plus momentum over matter in mountainbiking). And falling over: you have to do plenty of that in both.
Anyway, 'nuff said; 'nuff skiting. It was a fun week, with many felicitous catch-ups, planned and unplanned. I felt as though I got the good bits of Centralia without the bad (mainly the isolation).
This is the end of the Centralian idyll coda. Sporadic blogging will resume elsewhere.