I met Katie though the wonders of the blogosphere. (She's a wonderful blogger).
Katie will be biking across America with our group to celebrate her 30th year.
But Katie is not a biker. This whole biking-till-you-drop thing is new to her.
And Al, although she has biked some distances in the past, may lack training due to her jaunt in Argentina.
When we filled in the America by Bike forms, our replies were a study in contrast.
How many miles did you cycle last year?
How many miles do you ride each month?
Helen: 1200 miles
Al: 0 miles
I'm not sure what Katie's numbers are, but I suspect they are closer to Al's than mine.
So how can they imagine to take on this great challenge?
You add Al's age and Katie's age and you still don't quite match my years.
I'm getting sore knees and bad eyes and all sorts of aches and pains.
I've seen Al go from no biking at all to 40 miles in a day and to 75 miles in a day - all in one week.
That would easily take me 7 weeks to match that stride.
I expect when we start in Astoria I may be able to out-bike these youngsters. But by the Black Hills of South Dakota they may be leaving me in their dust.
So I promise to help them with words of advice from my experience. If they promise to carry me over the Appalachians.
Together we will make it.