Tuesday, July 25, 2017
Bikes, Beers and Birthdays
I went down to Portland over the weekend to hang with family to celebrate my Mom's birthday and my own - they fall 3 days apart- and also to hang out with old friends. I got down to Portland early in the day and went to what I think of as bike church - velo cult. I can drool over cool steel bikes, they had a lugged Stump Jumper built up as a touring bike that I had a cool conversation with owner about "not zippy but you can rack up touring miles all day on it".
Since they also serve beer I had a lovely hop nosh IPA from Uinta and as an extra bonus Le Tour was on. I have only been half halfheartedly following this year, I'm too cheap to pay $30 for the NBC coverage and the Eurosport coverage I got for free online for the past 3 or 4 years was not available (restricted) this year so I have just been watching summaries. It was cool, though, to be watching in a bike shop with other bike nerds, surrounded by cool bikes and drinking great beer. And Boss Eddy powered to the stage 19 win by going right on a round about when the rest of the group went left, it always astounds me how so much effort over so much distance - about 140 miles - can be undone by one small miscalculation.
After celebrating birthdays with Family on Saturday it was on to a bike ride with friends on Sunday. Every summer Portland hosts a series of Sunday Parkways that I envy. In Seattle they do close down a portion of lake Washington blvd. on many summer Sundays for cyclists but that pales in comparison to the bike events Portland puts on. As it turns out this event was only 10 blocks and a hill from my friends house. The parkways events are very family oriented and there are usually a number of parks along the route with various activities.
The bike line up for the day included my buddy's Klein Q Carbon, he goes about 6'8"
His daughters lovely hydro-formed aluminum Specialized Secteur, she goes about 6' 5"
And for me the workhorse Handsome Devil.
Closed streets, blue skies, warm but not hot temps, just about perfect for riding.
The Portland Opera was putting on a show at our first stop.
And there was yummy hand made ice cream - lemon marionberry.
An in an effort to keep Portland weird there was this giant wheel bike. I have no idea how it worked but it was cool and as I passed him I made a quip about thinking that burning man was over this year. I should have asked where to you get a tire for that thing?
I didn't get the greatest shot but at our last park stop there was a circus school performing.
And after a 10.5 mile ride it was time to sit on the porch in a comfy chair and sip beer. A happy birthday indeed. Ride.Smile.Repeat,