Renly: A pity you lost the bet. It would've been so nice for you to have a friend.
Littlefinger: And when will you be having your friend?
The evening after I purchased the Lime-a Bean, in a moment of self-deprecation, I said, "It only holds one bike, but that's okay, because it's not like I'm not going to have any friends anymore, anyway." Of course, I was saying this in a "hot tube" (tub) with six awesome teammates who undoubtedly have my back, so it was an obvious exaggeration of circumstances. At the time I was really just expressing my greater anxiety regarding my immediate cycling community's potential reaction to my split with Adam. Of course, many of those fears were relieved the very next day when I encountered Adam on a group ride with the majority of A Cycling Team's members, and everyone still spoke to me and even invited me to go eat with them after he left.
I did, perhaps my own impatience leading to self-fulfilling prophecy, lose the one friend with whom I had spent the most time driving bikes around in cars. It was a bitter pill to swallow, but otherwise I feel like I've been accepted by the people I care about and not judged too harshly for my decision. For that I am so thankful, and the quantity and quality of my friendships have actually increased greatly in the last few weeks.
That journey has been foremost in my mind the past week, because it was supposed to be the first race where Adam and I would both be present, and I was very nervous all week. While I have been busy traveling and exploring new cultures (in exotic locations like the plains of Illinois), the regional cyclocross/mountain bike scene is still my home, and I still want to feel welcome there. I felt like the DINO BCSP race would be the first real indication of how things would feel for me socially in the racing scene from here on out. For better or worse, the race was postponed due to wet trails, so that experience will be delayed a bit longer.
So the fact that I finally got around to putting a roof rack on the Lime-a Bean this week seems pretty symbolic. Not only do I no longer have to feel guilty throwing dirty bikes in the back of my brand new car (which I got cleaned back up to almost-new condition), but I'm now able to drive around friends with bikes, if needed. I haven't put it to use yet, but it seems like a much more immediate possibility than it did six weeks ago.
As for training, there's not much to tell. After so much singlespeeding on my mini vacation and the trip to the Gravel Metric, I noticed that my hands were a lot worse. They definitely seem to be exacerbated by fatigue, so I decided to experiment with a complete rest week to see if that improved the situation. It did help slightly, and I think forcing myself to stay home and do nothing for a while was good for my brain, too. However, I think that complete rest would only speed my recovery by 10-20% at best, and it would still take a long time to get better. It's just time that I accept that I'm going to be shifting gears "like a mutant lobster" for a while and not stress out about it. They are improving slowly, and as long as I'm back to 100% by cyclocross season, it's fine. I've got over three months for that, so I think it will be okay.