The Experiment: A Day at the Races

This weekend M and I really put the experiment to the test. This post is longer than the usual experiment posts.

Let’s start with Saturday.

First we went over to the Downtown Grower’s Market at Robinson park and picked up a few veggies. Next, we did the usual Saturday grocery shopping with our bikes and the trailer. The rear fender on M’s 1980’s Schwinn decided to liberate itself on the trip up and was casing it to rub against her tire. On the return trip M and her bike rode the bus home. I hauled all of our food up and down the hills in the trailer in the hot sun while she got to sit back and relax in the nice and cool air-conditioned bus. Okay, it wasn’t really that hot and will all the downhill riding I had a nice breeze accompanying me on the trip home. Once M got home I removed the fenders. This was a bigger task then I thought it would be. To remove the fenders you have to remove the wheels and the brakes. With the rear fender you have to also disconnect it from the bike frame. Many of the fenders screws were stripped. This is an easy fix as long as you have a screw driver and a rubber mallet. One good whack with the mallet and the screw driver loosens up the defunct screws. After I got the fenders off and everything back together I decided to go ahead and take the bike into the shop and get everything checked out, since we have had so many “little issues” with this bike recently. I had to go to the shop and pick up her one-speed, so this was the perfect time to take it in. This also means that M would have to ride the single speed for Sunday’s adventures.

Sunday was the big day for us: Doughnuts, Lavender Festival, REI, and Marble Brewery.

M wanted to go to the Lavender Festival out by the Los Poblanos Inn and I immediately said yes, not because of the lavender mind you but for the opportunity to make a longer trip than the 3.5 miles to the grocery store. The festival grounds are about 7 miles from our home. However, before we took off to the festival we made a slight detour and went to Rebel Donuts first. They are hands down the best place to get a doughnut and they are totally local. I don’t really care for sweets all that much, but I do enjoy Rebel’s sweet and airy offerings. Hopped up on sugar and pastry flour, we headed off to the festival. We decided to take the Bosque Trail instead of surface streets. It is a little longer this way, but much more scenic with the river and the all the trees. There were a lot of people out riding. I don’t think I have seen that much bike traffic so early in the morning. M and I joked that it must have been rush hour. Honestly, I prefer bicycle rush hour traffic over automobile rush hour.

About half way there we came across a fellow cyclist that had a flat tire and was walking her bike home. I had learned my lesson the week before about getting a flat tire and started carrying extra tubes and a small assortment of tools. We stopped and helped her change the tube and got her back on the road in no time at all. Her bike does not have quick release tires, luckily neither does M’s bike, so I had a the correct tool for the job. After about 10 minutes M and I were back on the trail and I must admit I was feeling pretty good about being able to help someone out. It took us 42 minutes to get to our destination instead of the expected 30 minutes. According to Google Maps it takes 15-20 minutes to get to the festival grounds, but once you add the distance one must walk from the parking outside of the grounds to the festival entrance the time is about the same.

We road right up to were we paid the festival admission and locked the bikes up in the bicycle parking area. Basically the event had a lot of lavender. Lavender trimmings, lavender soap, lavender lotion, lavender lemonade, lavender…you get the idea. So, we checked out all things lavender, then got some lunch from one of the many food trucks ( I review the food truck later this week) at the event and then headed out to our next destination, REI. Most of the trip toREI had either a bike lane or a multi use trail. It was not until we got the the Renaissance center that the bike lanes disappeared and we found ourselves in the center of a small car-kingdom full SUV drivers in a hurry to get to COSTCO. Once we finished up at REI, we stuffed our purchases into my pack and headed back to downtown.

By the end of the day we were out for 6 hours, spent and hour and a half of that time riding our bikes, and burned off 700 calories ( so the doughnut and lunch), worked on our biker tan and had spent a really enjoyable day with each other.

until tomorrow

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