Where did everyone go?

Tour of CA — Stage 6
Santa Barbara – Santa Clarita

Breakfast was very unusual today. Again with many (all) teams eating in
one place, meals can be quite hectic. So we asked our friend Barbara at
the Bulldog cafe to see if she could prepare breakfast for our team. She
was obviously happy to do so. I’ve been at the bulldog cafe hundreds of
times. Always for coffee and/or maybe a muffin too. Occasionally some
world renowned Carrot Cake when they make it. But breakfast was not how
I think of the Bulldog cafe. But they do have the ability to cook there
so breakfast is not really out of their realm.

The breakfast venue has the usual breakfast fare. Pancakes or waffles,
Eggs (usually scrambled), Hot oatmeal/Museli, Bacon or Sausage, Breads,
and fruit. And of course the carb loaded pasta (ugh..for breakfast —
I’ll pass). But the teams bring things that are not usually at
breakfast. Things like almond butter, Good honey’s, Some types of whole
grain breads, a few different (good for you) cereals (such as something
Oats) and other items more commonly found at Trader Joe’s versus the
usual grocery store. We bring these unusual items in what is commonly
called the breakfast box. Weird to bring breakfast things TO breakfast
but these are not usual items at a NORMAL breakfast.

Usually a soigneur will bring the breakfast box to breakfast when he or
she comes down. Since he or she is usually at breakfast well before the
riders come to eat. But this time breakfast was three blocks away and
not in our hotel. And since the soigneurs did not eat (or ate much
later) one of our riders brought it. Odd/cool to see Ivan Basso walking
down the street carrying our teams breakfast box. Winner of many
prestigious races including the Giro D’Italia and not above carrying the
breakfast box to the bulldog.

We had everything ready to go this morning. Cars gassed and cleaned.
Bikes loaded. And all the luggage in the truck to go to the next hotel.
All teams at one hotel so I am eager to get there fast just in case
parking is tight. But just before we were to depart for the race and I
was to depart for the next hotel, Johan and Eki came down with gear
changed for today’s stage. Bummer. But the three of changed 15 sets of
cogs (8 race bikes, 5 spare wheels on car #1 and 2 spare wheels on car
#2). We did this in less than 15 minutes. Pull all bikes off the cars,
change cogs and put them back on the cars to go to the start of the
stage. While it only took 15 minutes, I look and the parking lot is
empty. Save for Rabobank who wanted to follow me to the hotel. My plan
of going quickly to the hotel for good parking flew out the window.

Where did everyone go? Because the parking lot is a ghost town.