Day 0: Preliminaries

Lots of red tape to deal with. The day before the ride, you have to go to the starting point (which was the World Trade Center on Boston's waterfront last year; I gather that it will be at Northeastern University this time). You have to do all the following things: All of this was remarkably efficient, and never involved standing in line for more than five minutes at a time, but it did take a couple of hours to get through it all. Having to leave my bike was the most annoying one; you're supposed to be there at 6am the next morning, and how are you supposed to manage that if you have to give up your bike? (The T doesn't run early enough.)

I didn't have a tentmate in mind, so they gave me one then and there. Don't remember much about him; we didn't see each other much. He was a morning person, and was up well before me each morning; in the evening, he was already back and had the tent up before I arrived. And he never came to the tent on night 3 at all; perhaps he got a better offer. Or perhaps he gave up on the ride somewhere during day 3; couldn't blame him if he did.

After all that, I went out with Marian for a nice big pre-ride dinner. Don't remember what we ate; it was too long ago. (It's June 1997 as I write this.)