Dave, beside me, said, “Hey, are you okay?” I said I wasn’t, and he said that I never say that. Tom told me to drink, and I told him I had been, and he told me to eat, and I told him I had been, and he said, “Uh-oh.” The periphery of my vision flickered, then began darkening. I dragged one foot through a pedal stroke, then the other, and when I didn’t feel asphalt against my cheek I figured I must have been still upright and moving so I did it all one more time.
A cyclist can go a long way like that. Dave said, “You’ll ride through this.” He stayed beside me, more an act of balancing than pedaling. Ray came back. I think he was telling long, funny stories but it was only the rhythm of his voice that I could hear, and my feet followed that. Tom was out of the saddle in front of me, bobbing, and that had a rhythm, too, and as my ears followed Ray my eyes followed Tom, and Dave said, “You’re riding through this.”
— The Pursuit, October 2012