- Tandems are way cool. Everyone we rode with seemed to be cheered up just having a tandem on the road. We became known to the rest of the riders, and later, by apparently random people in Provincetown, as "those crazy tandem people."
- omegabeth did not keel over and die from biking on her broken ankle.
- omegabeth actually finished in way better shape than I did. By the end of the ride, she was doing the bulk of the hard cranking.
- omegabeth is clearly a mutant who has supernormal healing powers and possibly an adamantium endoskeleton.
- Good bike fit is really important. Really really important. Like, as important as you thought it was, and then more important than that. I did an okay job of sizing the tandem to me, but "okay" is not good enough, especially for a trip like this. I finished the ride with severe numbness in the ring and little fingers of both hands, and profoundly diminished gripping strength. Right now I can barely turn a key in a lock, put on my socks, or write my name. Calling the doctor first thing in the morning.
- As important as it is to wear sunscreen, for the love of god remember not to wear it on your face. Because then when you start sweating, it melts and trickles down your forehead into your eyes, and it stings and you can't see and THAT WILL MAKE YOU DIE.
Left Kendall: 4:55pm
Arrived Mosaic: 8:50pm
moominmolly warned me that riding a tandem means communicating constantly about everything. So true! Braking! Shifting! Turning! Stopping!
In our case it was particularly about shifting, since changing gears unexpectedly is really mean to Beth's ankle. By the end of the ride I was getting a lot better at doing it smoothly, but still need practice.
And pedaling! Pedaling needs to be coordinated. The cranks on a tandem are locked in sync, so you can't coast unless your partner does too. So weird!
• tighten shifter cables
• swap seats
• rotate stoker handlebars up a bit
• thank Molly and David profusely
On Sunday, a couple of 30-mile loops to see if we think we can make it the whole way to Ptown. Onward!
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I have done this ride twice now with inseriatim. omegabeth, who has volunteered at the rest stops for the last three years, has decided this year to ride with me. Together we are going to be "TEAM HELPFUL" and we are now soliciting volunteers to join us.
Seriously: you will probably never have a 130-mile bike ride more fun than this one: you get five rest stops with snacks and sandwiches and brownies, at the end of the ride you're in Provincetown and you get brunch the following morning before getting on the ferry back to Boston.
If we get enough people on the team, we can look into splitting a bigger fancier room at a B&B!
If we get enough people on the team, we can look into getting TEAM HELPFUL JERSEYS.
Oh this is going to rock.
Last weekend omegabeth and I attended dervishspin's "Snooty Foods" party. Challenged to come up with the snootiest, snobbiest, elitest, most exclusivest snotty food we could imagine, we invented arugula rugelach: arugula (and a little spinach), blended into a pesto with garlic, olive oil, walnuts and asiago cheese, and rolled up in little wedges of rugelach pastry made according to the King Arthur cookbook recipe.
Oh my heavens these things were good. A professional chef in attendance pronounced them the best dish he'd had in a long time, and begged us for the recipe. They disappeared faster than most everything else on the table.
A special shout-out goes to coraline for coming up with the name and inspiring me to actually try to make these work!
Edit: just to be clear, it was a fabulous date. EVOO was a hit out of the park, we got to hang out for a bit with inahandbasket (who did his best to entertain us when we found that prosicated was at work), and stopped by spike's for hilarious conversation and some delightful cocktails mixed by aroraborealis.
And having a first date on the first snowfall of the year is.... sublime.
But it's a funny experience to be having a first date, a date which is explicitly designated a "first date", with someone who you know so well in some ways and yet in others are starting from scratch.
- Surprise visit and magnificent birthday cake from omegabeth in the morning
- Surprise visit and gifts from chaiya in the morning
- Long lunch and great conversation with ectophylla
- Surprise birthday dinner and magnificent birthday cake from keyne, Mom, Dad and the kids
- Lots of post-dinner visits from the neighbors to help polish off as much of the cake as possible.
The magnificent birthday cake from omegabeth was a chocolate layer cake with peanut butter frosting.
The magnificent birthday cake from keyne and npierce was.... a chocolate layer cake with peanut butter frosting and chocolate glaze.
I think I may be getting predictable.
But enough of that. Here's what matters. All day long, I ran into people at every turn who were conspiring to make sure I had a good day. And wow, apparently I needed that more than anything.
Thanks and love to you all. You are my rockstars.