Sunday, December 11, 2011

A Three Hour Tour

After a morning full of vacuuming, carpet shampooering and cleaning up this disaster:

(Tycho, who loves to knock things down, destroyed one of Brad's terrariums.) I HAD to get out of the house and get some fresh air.

I decided today to find a new favorite route (they all become favorites, so why have just one?) and headed out towards Jonesborough. Equipped with both my DSLR and iPhone, I still managed to take very few photos. :/ Once I'm out there peddling I just don't want to stop! And that's just what I did today. I Started out on Boones Creek rd, which has a bike lane that doesn't last for long. It might be 3-4 miles, if that. Then it just ends at an intersection. On the opposite side of the intersection, where the bike lane would be, there is just a lane wide paved shoulder that is unmarked as to what it's usage may be. So that's where I rode. The road is a two lane highway at this point with very few passing zones, a 45-55mph speed limit and lots of hills making it difficult for drivers to see any oncoming traffic. But it's a lovely ride. Several guys in trucks honked and waved, several people in cars gawked. Always fun to be the weird girl on a bike. :)

I got almost to the "Historic" part of Jonesborough when I spotted a road to my left that called my name. So I went for it. I didn't even bother to check the name of the road. It turned out to be a narrow, unlined little back country road. Several small farms and a tiny little neighborhood. A couple little county churches. It probably would be a beautiful street to ride down spring through summer, but today, even with the sun shinning it wasn't much to see.

But curiosity had me, so I kept going and suddenly found myself at an intersection that I knew!

I used to take this road out to the donkey farm! I've always loved the view from the top of this hill.

So I decided to take a detour and go visit the donkeys.

Then I found out that a lady I know who lives about two miles from the farm had bought two of the donkeys. So I rode over to her farm to visit for a bit.

Chessie and Rocky have settled in quite nicely into their new home. And are SPOILED ROTTEN, like every donkey should be. :)

About this time I was getting a bit tired, and knew that laundry and dishes awaited me, so I headed home. When I left my house, around 1:00pm, it was about 47F. I had on jeans, knee high wool socks, converse sneakers, long sleeved shirt, tweed blazer and mittens. Jonesborough is down in a hole and about 10F colder. Everything on me was fine except my feet! I could barely feel them by time I got home. So note to self, NO canvas sneakers this time of year, even if it's warm when I leave home. :)

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Don't, Don't, Don't Let's Start

Have you seen the excellent list of Don't's ? For those who haven't, check it out! It's a fantastic list of 41 "Don'ts" for women cyclists from 1895. I thought it would be fun to go through and do a "Don'ts" get to know you:

Don’t be a fright. - Well, if you ever spot me on a Sunday morning when I haven't had my tea yet and am on a donut mission...

Don’t faint on the road. - Yeah, good plan. What about beside the road?

Don’t wear a man’s cap. - Too late

Don’t wear tight garters. - Again, too late.

Don’t forget your toolbag - Oops!

Don’t attempt a “century.” - Only b/c I haven't had the time.

Don’t coast. It is dangerous. - But I live on top of a ridge! I HAVE to coast. Down anyway.

Don’t boast of your long rides. - Well there's no point boasting about my short rides.

Don’t criticize people’s “legs.” - What about their "brains"?

Don’t wear loud hued leggings. - Yup. Do that.

Don’t cultivate a “bicycle face.” - HA! I Like to check out people's driving face.

Don’t refuse assistance up a hill. - Like anyone would really offer. Sheesh...

Don’t wear clothes that don’t fit. - I pretty much always wear clothes that don't fit. And yet I'm a seamstress. You would think I would do something about that.

Don’t neglect a “light’s out” cry. - Or a "last call" cry. Have one for me!

Don’t wear jewelry while on a tour. - Any? At all? I've got some I can't take out.

Don’t race. Leave that to the scorchers. - And the NASCAR driver wannabes.

Don’t wear laced boots. They are tiresome. - Tiresome yet HOT! Definitely worth the effort. :)

Don’t imagine everybody is looking at you. - But they are I tell you! I see them try to take pictures as they drive by!

Don’t go to church in your bicycle costume. - Not a problem. But there was this one time that I had to change out of the torn petticoat part of my "bicycle costume", and I did it right in front of a church. :o

Don’t wear a garden party hat with bloomers. - Only fezzes are acceptable with bloomers.

Don’t contest the right of way with cable cars. - Right.

Don’t chew gum. Exercise your jaws in private. - Hey hey! ;)

Don’t wear white kid gloves. Silk is the thing. - I prefer wool, but sure, ok.

Don’t ask, “What do you think of my bloomers?” - Oh come on, you can tell me. What DO you think of my bloomers? ;)

Don’t use bicycle slang. Leave that to the boys. Um...

Don’t go out after dark without a male escort. - I'm going to call my headlight my "male escort" now.

Don’t without a needle, thread and thimble. - Don't anything, ever?

Don’t try to have every article of your attire “match.” Heh, I'm lucky if I pull off coordinated.

Don’t let your golden hair be hanging down your back. - Not a problem for this brunette!

Don’t allow dear little Fido to accompany you - Only Felix

Don’t scratch a match on the seat of your bloomers. - I never could get them to light that way anyway.

Don’t discuss bloomers with every man you know. - There's enough discussion of bloomers in this list as it is.

Don’t appear in public until you have learned to ride well. - Only ride in very tight circles in your living room until you can ride well enough to be seen in public.

Don’t overdo things. Let cycling be a recreation, not a labor. - YES!

Don’t ignore the laws of the road because you are a woman. - Don't ignore the laws of the road b/c you are a CYCLIST.

Don’t try to ride in your brother’s clothes “to see how it feels.” - I don't have a brother. Can I try out dad's?

Don’t scream if you meet a cow. If she sees you first, she will run. - What if the cow broke out of it's field and is running down the road at you?

Don’t cultivate everything that is up to date because yon ride a wheel. I've never been good at "up to date".

Don’t emulate your brother’s attitude if he rides parallel with the ground. - Only if he rides perpendicular to the ground.

Don’t undertake a long ride if you are not confident of performing it easily. - B/c then you might have to walk the bike. The shame!

Don’t appear to be up on “records” and “record smashing.” That is sporty. - And they don't play very well once smashed.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Do You Decorate Your Bike For The Holidays?

I know it might be a little bit cheesy, but when my boss gave me these little Christmas decorations, I couldn't resist adding them to the Pashley basket.

Though, with just two little decorations and a bit of garland, it still seems a bit sparse. I've got the Bobbin theme, just need the Sprocket!

Friday, November 25, 2011

My 35th Black Friday

Today is my 35th Black Friday. What better way to spend it than out and about on bikes! I loaded up on chocolate donuts for breakfast, we got the derailleur (kinda) working on the trike and headed to the Greenbelt.

Practiced some Panda shots. I still haven't quite got the hang of it.

But I'm getting better!

Or not. Let's try this standing still.

There we go! Obviously I need more practice. ;)

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Quiet Week

Took a short ride out to Boone Lake Wednesday afternoon. It's the lowest I ever seen it right now. Where the Fuji is at in this picture is usually about 4 feet deep.

There's a little playground there. The ground under the swings is so dished out from kids scraping their feet when they swing that I can't even touch the ground.

If only I could have found a way to carry this pretty piece of driftwood home!

The mittens are coming along. Slowly!

Tesla has taken to riding the Fuji.

Talula, Gno and Oliver are curious about bikes, but not enough to really give it a try.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Catching up!

You would think that with modern convinces like smart phones and such and increased free time since I'm only working one job now I would be able to post regularly. Yeah, no such luck!

Quick recap of things going on here:

I went to SAFF (Southeast Animal Fiber Festival) and was very proud of myself. I did NOT bring home another fleece to spin! Didn't even look at them. I did get some lovely corriedale wool that will become a sweater for The Husband, and some yarn to knit me these:

(Not my actual pair, but I bought the same colors)

And I bought a big handwoven in Ghana basket to hang from the rear rack on either bike. Here it is on the Fuji:

I also knit a snake for my 3 year old niece who had to undergo surgery to remove a brain tumor.

So far so good on her recovery. And she loves her snake. :)

I discovered that a knitting needle dropped just right into a kitteh's fur can look like it went right through the kitteh:

And Tesla still enjoys hanging out on the Pashley.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Bike Date: Kingsport Greenbelt

The Husband and I had a bike date today! It's the first bike date that we've had. It was a gorgeous 75F with sunny skies. We strapped his trike to the roof and my fuji to the back of the car and off we went to the Kingsport Greenbelt.

It's a lovely multi-purpose path that meanders through the woods and meadows, following a creek the whole way.

We started at the Historic Exchange Place where you have to cut through the Exchange Place property on an unpaved, rocky path before you reach the Greenbelt. From then on it's paved.

We saw ducks:

And lots of people out walking/jogging. Tons of people out on bikes! I might not see many people using the roads here to ride their bikes, and now I know why. They're all on the Greenbelt!

We rode about 14 miles total. 7 to and 7 fro with a stop at a Marble Slab that conveniently backs right up to the path.

This was a great first bike date! We've decided to make a habit of going to the Greenbelt. Now if only I can figure out a way to carry the Pashley out there...

Friday, September 23, 2011

Little Story About My First Time Calling the Police on a Motorist

First off, sorry for the silence! Hadn't really realized that it's been almost a month since I last checked in. Oops...

Also, don't really have any photo's to illustrate this story, so here's one of the Fuji playing in some leaves. It is the first day of fall after all. :)

So on my ride out to the barn this afternoon, I spotted a big red pickup truck in my rearview mirror. I take note of it and think nothing of it. Suddenly I hear a police siren! I check the mirror again, but no cop, just the big red pickup. Then the truck roars around me, the driver flipping me the bird! I was just a bit dumbfounded. Did that truck have a police siren?!? Big red 4X4 with deer hunting stickers all over the back window. Surely people can't just go around with police sirens in their personal vehicles. At this point I felt my hand coming off the handlebar to return the fowl but I caught myself! And since my hand was already up I made the "call me" gesture at the guy. Suddenly his hand shot back in the truck and he floored it. I guess he thought that meant I was going to call the police. So I thought that might be a good plan. When I got to the barn I called the police. They took my report and description (unfortunately didn't get a license plate number) but they did seem interested that someone was going around with a police siren in their truck.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Scenic Route

I finally got back on my bikes today after dealing with the first nasty head/chest cold of the season. It feels so good to ride again!

I'm beginning to really like this route as compared to my usual. It's got a longer, steeper hill, but strangely it seemed easier today. Granted, this was the first time riding the Fuji up it. Maybe there's something about this bike that makes it easier to ride uphill? The only other bike I've ridden on it is the Kettler, which is also a 10 speed mixte, but has 27" wheels with skinny little 23mm (?) tires. It's aluminum whereas the Fuji is steel with 700c 35mm. I dunno. Maybe I'm still just sick and delusional. :)

Also, I just found this image amusing:

Bicycle, field of tobacco, school. Three things that are never encouraged to go together. Really only two should. :)

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

New Wheels!

Just a quickie to say that I finally got new wheels installed on my Fuji! Sun CR18 700c.

Also, as you can see I put Schwalbe Delta Cruisers in cream on.

They've been such a pleasure to ride with on the Pashley and the Hercules that I just couldn't see trying another tire.

And they've got their first 5 miles of black road stripe on them.

I'm just so happy to be able to stop now without being jerked back and forth. My original rims had gotten a couple of dents in the rear. So when braking it rode really rough. Like going down a gravel road with washboard. Also, being chromed steel, there was no stopping in the rain. Which is a little bit more excitement than I really want! :)

I wish that I had taken a before picture of the freewheel sprocket when it came off the old wheel. It was encrusted in 35 years of hardened grease and grime. My husband has an ultra sonic cleaner. We filled it with a cleaner/ de- greaser that he uses in the shop a lot called BH38. We placed the freewheel in it for about 10-15 minutes. It took two cleanings, but it took all of the grease and dirt off!

My chain is still gross, but will probably be replaced soon anyway. Now I just need a good rain to ride in to see how well the brake pads will stop these wheels.