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Posted by wetalkhablamos in chechu, cycling fans, team astana, tour de georgia.

The gods won’t let Amy have a perfect day, but with this much Chechu time, it’s got to be close. –Rebecca

A girl can hope, can’t she? Another one of my Tour de Georgia dreams came true today when I caught the bouquet of flowers that Andre Greipel threw into the crowd.

I soon discovered that I’ve developed a nasty allergy to flowers. My right eye was on fire and watering like a garden hose, and then when that eased up after 20 minutes, I started coughing. Being a nurse, I feared the next step would be the throat closing and anaphylactic shock, but luckily that did not happen. So, for the past two days I’ve had these odd experiences happen (the fall and the new allergy) and yet, my spirit can’t be dimmed. I’m having the time of my life, literally.

I won the signed rider cards for Tuesday’s Trivia Contest. Don’t worry, it was fair and square. I not only provided the correct answer but I was the only person to provide one. No favorites being played here so keep your grubby little hands away from my cards.

My drive to Washington for the start of Stage 3 was less eventful than yesterday–no dead deer or totaled cars or poor little puppies in the road. I got there before the team bus so I walked around looking at the different booths they had set up. They had a live band playing which was really nice, and it really was a quaint little town.

When the bus got there I started just hanging around waiting for the boys to come out. Chechu was his usual kind self and stuck his head out the window and waved to me.

Is he for real? Oh yes, he is the genuine article–a gentleman through and through. When the peloton started to line up for the start, I was hanging back a little to get some pictures and he rode right up to the barriers with that smile of his and stopped and talked with me for about ten minutes while he waited.

El señor de la bicicleta, Stage 3

I took the opportunity to let him know how much my interactions with him have meant to me and what a gentleman he is. Another lesson I’ve learned this week, or at least one I’ve started to put into practice, and that is to let people know what they mean to you while you have the chance. How often am I going to have one-on-one time with Chechu Rubiera? He said it was no problem because he’s only busy when he’s riding. How cute…

After the start I headed right for the finish town. I was going to try to get to the feed zone to try to get a tossed-off musette, but not even Chechu knew exactly where the feed zone was. I said it’d be wherever there is someone holding bags out for them. He seemed to like that.

My GPS took me directly into downtown Gainesville, and I stopped at a CVS to ask if anyone knew where to go, but I instead read the front page of the newpaper and found my way to the finish within 10 minutes.

The finish was downhill today then went around a slight curve, then up a hill. The guys were going to do two circuits of this. I decided to position myself at the top of the hill. It would mean missing the finish but I thought the pictures of them coming up the hill would be nicer and I was one of only 12 people up there; I was right by the road with no barrier and I’m glad I chose to go there. I tried, after the second circuit, to rush to the finish line but it was too far. Again, no biggie, because the guys finished the race, came around the curve and back up the hill again before turning around and heading for the buses.

I got some great pictures and even talked with Dave Zabriskie. Well, I talked, he barely nodded acknowledgement in my direction. Poor guy looked like he was about to fall off his bike.

Anniebb is here now and we’ll be going to the TTT together tomorrow. She says “Hello” to everybody. So you may end up getting two blogs tomorrow, or I’ll just let her do it.

Until then, don’t send me any flowers.


Amy gets a requested shot of Roman Kireyev, Stage 3



1. Annick (from Paris) - April 24, 2008

Hi Amy,

Congratulations for your reports and fabulous pictures from the Tour de Georgia. They make me happy. It seems to me that I am over there with you.
Your dreams became reality and you share them with us. Thank you very much for your cheerfulness and your humor.
I look forward tomorrow.
(please excuse my bad English).


2. Anikó Szász - April 24, 2008

Thanks for the great report again Amy! I’m really happy, that you enjoy yourself and that you have the opportunity to talk to Chechu a lot! Please if you have the possibility give him our best wishes, greetings, hugs and kisses from his 2 Hungarian fans Annie and Bea!


3. VinoFan - April 24, 2008

Many thanks for Roman’s pictures, I hope you’ll enjoy your Astana escorting without any more edema :)
And we’re waiting for your new really lively reportages!

4. Christine KAHANE - April 24, 2008

Great repport, Amy. I am happy that you had a chance to meet Chechu. He is such a darling, and I am sure it makes him very happy to see you every day. Next time you talk to him tell him you are writing a report for the website, and kiss him from Nicky and me. Hasta pronto.

5. cg - April 25, 2008

Hey, Amy! Sorry to freak you out today at Road Atlanta by saying hi like I knew you! (Yes, you’re now that famous!) I had a blast today hanging around at the bus and around the track and it was fun having a fellow fan to chat with for a few moments.
It was a good day. :)

6. Tour Fan ...Chris - April 25, 2008

Glad to read you’re having such a great time! :-D We all get to have fun with you. Take care!

7. Charlotte - April 25, 2008

Yeeeeesssssss, still very jealous BUT very happy for you!!!!!

PS…I’ll hold off on the flowers :-)

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