When @Cassady asked if I wanted to travel to Houston (aka H-Town), I said, “say less” and with a short turn around time to prepare for the trip, I started prepping myself and the club for my departure. Cassady had plans to visit her family and her old stomping grounds, this time with bike and helmet in hand and she suggested I, along with @Lani, join her.
Those who know me know that I’m all about traveling to different places, with my bike and with people with dope energy. So when the opportunity presented itself to bike the streets of Houston in March, I took full advantage of it. Go down memory lane with me for a minute (I promise!) …
My first time experiencing Houston’s cycling scene was in December 2021. At that time, I hadn’t had any connections to folks down there so I took several of my questions to @theblackcyclist page on Facebook. I wanted to know about Houston’s cycling culture and the clubs, the rides (including roll times & meet-up locations), the ins & outs … you know. The whole nine. Overall, the trip was love, partially because of the sporting events. But mostly because of the group rides, how welcoming the cycling community was and the good eats. We can’t forget about the food 😩
Fast forwarding to this year, I’ve made many more connections, fostered relationships with local cyclists and because of who we are, as a community, I’ve been able to fully embrace and welcome folks in Houston to join KRT and QRT. I can proudly say that we now have a very supportive and loyal community of cyclists in H-Town!
Let’s get to the actual trip, shall we? I traveled from Chilly Philly and @Lani and @Cassady both traveled from Los Angeles. I managed to arrive in Houston hours before the queens and from the very beginning, I felt genuinely welcomed. The hospitality was strong, for sure. It started by me telling one person I was headed back to Houston and word spread quickly. I was picked up from the airport, invited out for lunch and dinner, shown different spots throughout Houston and more. Major Taylor Houston (MTCC Houston), Justice League and Motherland Cycling all showed up and showed me love. A huge shout out to everyone who helped make my experience a great one.
@Cassady and @Lani were a huge part of why this trip was as special as it was for me. Every place we visited, every restaurant we ate at and every mile we rode together was memorable from the start of the trip to the very end. Individually, we rode a total of 110 miles in just under 3 days. In case you were wondering about the riding conditions there … it was mostly flat terrain, open roads and lots of humidity and scenery.
To match the weather and the welcoming spirit that exists in Houston, myself, @Lani and @Cassady pulled out the new Sunshine jersey to wear on Saturday. On Sunday, we switched things up a bit and hit the crowd with a little more boldness by pairing the new Art Basel jersey with our grey KRT/QRT bibs. Talk about wearing our Sunday’s best.
Overall, the trip was a great experience for me. One memory I think back to was how I felt seeing many cyclists, in Houston, wearing KRT and QRT jerseys and kits. Members and non-members were wearing our brand proudly. Talk about motivation and inspiration to keep pushing and striving for success no matter what because you just never know how many lives you’ll influence and how many people are truly watching and supporting you authentically.
It’s the last day. @Lani, @Cassady and myself are at the airport. I wish them a safe flight home, we exchange hugs and part ways. As I sit here on the plane, en route to Philly, I can’t help but to be thankful for all of the genuine love and support I received from folks far and near during my stay in Houston. Leaving isn’t always the easiest but the experiences are always worth it. Houston provided me with just enough for me to make this a destination spot for the club as a whole. 2024 sounds good, that’s for sure!
If I didn’t say it enough, thank you to everyone who helped make my second time in Houston an experience I’ll never forget. As I say: Cycling brings us together but having the respect and appreciation for one another enables us to connect beyond the saddle.