Maine Multisport had a tough day yesterday. Our local Tri shop closed it's doors. Unexpectedly. It was shocking and rough for many.
It leaves a hole in my heart--- it feels like a part of my life is gone.
I bought my first bike from a neat little shop a few years ago. I bought my wetsuit down the street at another fun little Tri shop. A year later, they merged. The result was a big friendly triathlon store that became home base for a wondeful family of friends.
I met so so many wonderful people through this shop. It wasn't about the merchandise to me. It was about the support, the comraderie, the unit. I grew to love Triathlon very quickly. It filled a void in my life that I didn't realize was there. When people ask me why I do this and what is so wondeful about this hobby.....many times I come back to the people. There is something very special about the people in this sport.
Even though I live an hour from this little mecca, I was there almost each week. Not because I needed gear, but because I needed to see my friends. Some days the shop was filled with 10 friends and sometimes only 2. But there were always friendly faces eager to chat about the race last weekend or the one coming up. It was filled with people just like me. People who love to live this lifestyle. Healthy, energetic, enthusastic people.
Living out of town is tough for me. It's not always easy for me to stay in touch with friends. I don't run into them at the grocery store or while out for a run. But I could always see them at Peak. And when I didn't see them, I read about them on their site. There was always an event coming up or a social on the calendar. We had a community.
And now our home base is gone.
The guys at Peak watched me start from nothing. They watched me dive in with no experience and in a few years find my way to Kona. They were there to help me. To advise me, to encourage me, and to pat me on the back. Thank you!!! Perhaps I could have done it alone, but I doubt it. And I Know it would not have been nearly as fun.
They supported all the local tri races. They were on site with support and smiles. I took Total advantage of Nat's experience and knowledge with bikes before Every single race. Now, I don't even have to ask. He sees me coming and knows I just need one more reminder of how to fix a flat. Or, like at Lobsterman two years ago, when I rode my new disc for it's inaugural warm up and flatted! I was in prerace panic mode Before that!! I simple looked at Brendan and Nat and sure enough, they took good care of me.
Many of us have talked in the past 24 hours.
One thing is clear. Real frienships last forever. A bond was made between many and I am sure we will rise above the loss and stick together.
Sad to see it all go. Big loss for Southern Maine and I will miss it very much.