Merci 321 Rollers!
Last night Alex and I had organised a push session around Paris and as is usually the case, it was just the two of us. We quickly got warmed up and found a nice route from Montparnasse in the South to Bastille in the East. The Bastille roundabout is cobbled therefore Alex and I were forced to use the pavements. On our way around we passed a group of Roller bladers and amongst them was a guy with a longboard. Everything clicked and I remembered that somebody had told me about a Roller blading meet that accepted longboarders!
The guy turned out to be Olivier who is part of the Blackkross team – man can he push. The rest of the bladers where really welcoming which was really refreshing when there is sometimes a little animosity. They were pretty impressed with our ability to keep up although the front runners were way out in front. It turned out to be an amazing route around Paris, big boulevards sharp twists and turns into quieter side streets with uphills and some great downhill sections.
Due to the fact that there were quite a few of us (around 40ish) we were literally able to stop the traffic and and pass through all but the biggest intersections – it was great not having to stop and yet feel safe because you were part of the group. As well as the rush of speed keeping the adrenaline pumping, lots of cars were weaving around, Algerian flags waving, horns beeping and people shouting – we worked out pretty quickly that Algeria had won the match with Egypt.
The two hours went by in a blur and in no-time we were back at Bastille. In all I reckon we did around 40km although there is no telling exactly where we went…I was lost half the time and every now and again I realised “ah ha, we’re here!”. Great stuff and brilliant to see bladers and boarders mingling so well.
During the course of the evening both Alex and I exchanged stories with Olivier about our distance adventures and he was pretty stoked to hear about our participation at Goodwood – hopefully he’ll be part of next years European contingent!