Saturday evening Pam joined us for dinner at the park and was a hit with three of her pies. One thing cyclists seem to enjoy is PIE! Following dinner we bid the others goodnight and came home.
On the day off Sunday most of the others visited the Desert Museum. I think they enjoyed the experience. I relaxed at home, fine tuned my gear and decided, not with standing some concerns with Bubba, to continue on with the group. What a great bunch, each with their own ambitions and desires for this tour and each a special joy to learn about as friends of the road.
The weather forecast for Sunday night and Monday called for strong winds and rain. I phoned Bubba to determine when we would depart on Monday. He was vague, didn't seem to know. I shared the forecast, suggesting we might want to get an early start and get to Monday camp in south Tucson early as winds pick up as the day goes on. He was not receptive.
Indeed, Sunday night was stormy, none of those camping got any sleep. Some of the tents were torn up, broken poles, dirty from blowing dust.
When Pam dropped me at the park Monday morning at 7:30 we heard all about the difficult night.
We were then told we would not be departing until 9 AM, we would not be given a route sheet, revealing how to get to our destination, rather we would be led, on a group ride, by some guy Bubba knows named Jim and he did not want us in camp until after 4:30 PM. Jim led us out of Catalina Park, kindergarden style, in a slow parade. Some one joked we should have crate paper in our spokes. We arrived at the University of Arizona campus about two hours later.
Jim gave a brief talk about the U of A and dismissed us until 3PM, when he would lead us on. All the while the weather is gathering and the wind increasing. We had lunch and looked about the campus. At three o'clock Jim showed up and informed us he was physically not able to continue but his friend Glen would be here soon to lead us in. Glen arrived and we set off, in what were becoming gale force winds, toward Cactus Country RV park where we were to spend Monday night. Glen stopped on several occasions to lecture on Davis Monthan Air Force Base. All quite interesting, if we were in a motor coach and not looking at the dark skies and riding into the teeth of a storm.
The riders were becoming increasingly restless with all this and by the time we arrived in camp at 5PM were demanding an explanation from Bubba. He stammered around with some feeble excuses. The others really have no recourse but to take what he gives and go on. He has their money, they are stuck out here in Arizona, and of course their desire was to ride cross country. I told Bubba I have had enough of his Bubbaness and was going home. He blanched.
This is the thing. A touring cyclist has need of certain things, given the challenge of such an undertaking.
Clear and accurate route sheets, and milage totals for each day. Most of us would like several days in advance. It helps us plan, to know how far we will be riding. Bubba would give the sheets each day ONLY after dinner.
A cyclist likes to know the menu. Sometimes you would have a larger lunch if the dinner menu was not something you liked. Again, Bubba was always hesitant to tell us anything.
My observation is that Bubba has big control issues. He thinks its all about him. He uses his control as a stage to masterbate his considerable ego constantly. His most often quoted line, " I know what your thinking, How does Bubba do it." .......Indeed, that sort of constant buffoonery, in absence of needed and promised support, becomes tedious and tiresome.
For my part, I am not YET stuck with Bubba far from home, Bubba did not YET have my money for the balance of the trip. And I didn't reckon I was going to be able to get Bubba to respond to our needs. So it was fish or cut bait. I cut Bubba. My hope is that the dust-up, both literal and figurative, last evening may move Bubba to better service for the others. I mentioned in a prior post my feelings for the good kids who work for Bubba. He has good people around him, but as the saying goes, "the fish stinks from the head down".
I'm disappointed I won't be pressing on with the others, to Florida, but I feel good that I had the chutzpah to stand up to Mr. Ego and extricate myself from his oppressive control before it was too late and save six weeks of misery. So it goes.
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Location:Home, Tucson AZ