It has been a time of bike repair. Last week I perfected the fine art of bending a derailleur hanger back into alignment. However, just to be on the safe side, I ordered a new derailleur hanger, and though I didn't immediately install it, knowing that my current hanger was probably vulnerable or still somewhat bent, having the spare on hand was reassuring.
A few days ago, while riding over to work for Laek House, the need to install the new hanger became apparent: the old one snapped off and left my derailleur hanging below my chainstay.
I chalk it up to my ongoing ironing out of bad luck in time for yet another big road race, the Bear Mountain Classic. Since some mishaps - a flat tire sustained on deep gravel, a bent hanger sustained in a he-crashed-into-me incident, and a tumble on a descent - have prevented me from contesting the end of Fawn Grove and Battenkill the way I would have liked, I hope that only my strength and fitness, and race acuity will be factors in my placing at Bear Mountain.
Always have a spare derailleur hanger handy. You never know.