|At our pre-ride respite in Orange City, Iowa|
So what happens on RAGBRAI that requires an entire entourage? Our support crew is worth its weight in gold - they are a finely tuned machine and have worked many hours to coordinate the safety and support of the riders. The first responsibility of our crew is to help us get out the door by 6:00 am with all of the "stuff" we will need before we see them again at the meeting town. Some days are more difficult than others to get the riders up and out and usually by the 4th day, they (nor we) are not as nice as on the first day in kicking our butts back out on the road...something about tired bodies and sore saddles.... After the riders are off and riding, the crew packs up all of the bedding, tents, chairs, everything and heads to the meeting town where they try to pick us out of a sea of 20,000 riders - so they have to remember what we are wearing to be able to find us - for me this is the hardest part of the job. When we check in at the meeting town they assess us, what do we need?, how are we?, what will we need at the end of the day?...I always feel so spoiled when I leave the check point and I have seen so many other riders come up to them asking them for help (which they willing provide). We got them a screened in porch to make shade at the pit stops and I anticipate quite a gathering of riders by the time I get to the meeting town each day.
|This was the last year we "painted"|
the car...it took 3 years for the
Iowa sun-baked paint to finally disappear
Not only could we not do this without this incredible support, we wouldn't want to...this is family vacation at its best, working together, supporting each other, eating together, playing games, cheering each other on, laughing and working it out together - I couldn't ask for anything more...
|Air Force tent experiencing air force|
|Mama Caruso following the tradition of raising your bike|
overhead before dipping in the Mississippi River at the end
of RAGBRAI...the back wheel was dipped in the Missouri River
at the beginning...7 days before