Sunday, January 16, 2011
At the annual Velo Cape Breton pot luck dinner and awards ceremony held at the Dobson Yacht Club on January 15, 2011, I was given the “Participant of The Year” award. I had been informed in advance that I had been nominated for something, but it was not revealed in what category. Jacques Coté is very good at keeping secrets. I speculated for days; “Most rhythmic rider?” (I am after all a drummer.) “Most outspoken?”
Finally, the time came to deliver the awards. As Rides Captain and all round great guy Peter Ross named the nominees for “Participant of The Year,” myself, Colette Smith and a third party whose name I can’t recall (my apologies) I felt it would go to one of the other two. After all, I didn’t participate in many of the group rides, my playing schedule keeping me out late the night before.
As Peter described the events that followed the disappearance of his bike after the Can-Bike II course in May, I understood slightly why I had at least been nominated, but I did not scour the city in search of Peter’s ride so that I would win an award. I did it because I had a bicycle stolen from me in 1982 and I remember the pain of that loss.
Bear in mind that at the time of the theft, I knew nothing of Peter beyond his role as Rides Captain and all round great guy. All I knew was that someone had stolen his ride and that was very uncool.
In truth, when I spotted his bike leaning against the side of the Needs Convenience store on George Street, across from Wentworth Park, I was on my way home. I stopped and there were three teenage males, two with skateboards, standing in front of the store. I asked if they’d seen who brought the bike and they replied “no.” I jumped to a conclusion and assumed that they had been involved (not too reliable in a court of law) and proceeded to unfasten my carrier rack to add Peter’s bike.
Once the bike was secured to my vehicle, I took it to the home of Jacques Coté and Micheline Guillot since I had no idea where Peter lived. Micheline was happy to accompany me to Peter's house and return his ride to him.
So, if doing a good deed for a fellow Velo rider is worthy of an award, then I accept gratefully, but I did only what I would hope anyone would have done. My thanks to the committee who put my name in for consideration and for choosing me as Participant of The Year.
Is it my imagination, or does coffee really taste better from a VCB mug?