PGCC Gravel Ride

I want to share my experience after participating in two consecutive days of Prince George Cycling Club rides. Yesterday was a gravel ride, and today was a road time trial.
In modern Chinese, there’s a slang term for cycling called “拉爆” (la bao). “拉” literally means “to grab something and force it to move in a specific direction,” but in the context of cycling, it refers to training. “爆” can be understood as “burst,” and in cycling, it means “collapse.” So, “拉爆” directly implies “collapsing during training.” If someone says they got “拉爆” during a ride, it means they couldn’t keep up with the group’s speed and stamina. Today, I got “拉爆” not once but twice! I especially want to thank those who took the lead and helped me break the wind, allowing me to catch up with the group, and those who waited for me after climbing hills, enabling me to complete my first road ride with PG.
During the ride, passing cars maintained a safe distance from our cycling group, even moving into the opposite lane. Additionally, bikes have the right-of-way when making left turns at intersections, just like cars. Both of these aspects were fantastic. I’ve always believed that observing a society’s attitude toward cyclists can reveal much about its operational methods, cultural atmosphere, and values. I genuinely love this cycling environment!
when I saw that almost everyone participating in today’s ride wore cycling shoes with cleats, I genuinely regretted swapping out my clipless pedals. The “whirlpools” of dust formed by the wind blowing over gravel roads, seemingly endless roads stretching into the distance, and the tireless riders lined up one after another – I knew this was a different, more authentic experience.
P.S.: After being “拉爆,” I wondered if it was because I didn’t use cycling shoes with cleats. But when I saw another rider without cleats consistently staying at the front of the group, I realized it wasn’t the shoes – it was the engine!
~ Mark Qing