Saturday, September 29, 2012

Slow Start

window view
Starbucks, Gainesville, Texas

You might think, after so many bone dry, hot summer days, one would be eager to roll out into a rainy, 70-degree morning.  In all honesty, however, there was some minor procrastinating going on.  After glancing at the weather radar and the "100% chance of rain" forecast, cooking a big breakfast seemed like a good idea.  And one more cup of coffee.  And a couple of bike tweaks.  But, as the photo illustrates, the ride did finally start.

In about 3.5 hours of riding, there was zero rain.  There was what you might call an occasional drizzle, and it was a perfect day for fenders.  Just the kind of delightful contrast that someone weary of hot and dusty would want.  Why did it take so long to get out the door?

Friday, September 28, 2012

Blessing Reminders

Although Mrs. Pondero rages against grasshoppers on the premises, she adores me (yeah, I can't explain it either) and puts up with me storing a gravel dust encrusted bicycle indoors.  It leans against the back of the couch in the middle of our combo kitchen/dining/living room.

The front door opens to the east, the back door opens to the west, and both doors have large glass "windows" in their upper halves.  So when the sun is rising or setting, much of the room is in shadows.  But there is a beam of sunlight that points directly to my bicycle.  When it glows thusly, I hear an angelic choir.  

It is as if the finger of God is pointing at one of His gifts to me saying, "Remember how blessed you are."

He actually points much more frequently to Mrs. Pondero with such reminders, but she's not one to sit and pose for photos like the vain Quickbeam. 

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Sunday, September 23, 2012

The Way to Henrietta (part 1)

Hello, boys and girls, it's story time!

This week's story is a work of fiction, written by a silly man who hasn't even ridden a bicycle to Henrietta (yet), but imagines what it might be like.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Not Welcome

It hopped off.

It was about to be flicked off.

Mrs. Pondero is as sweet as they come, but let me offer this word of warning. Don't EVER bring a grasshopper to our little place on the prairie.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Saturday, September 15, 2012

One Tooth Slower

There was some hesitation before installing the one tooth larger track cog.

Would it be an admission of weakness?

Would it slow me down too much?

And then I remembered riding fixed on gravel roads is not the fastest option any way.

Besides, one of the delightful joys of riding a bicycle is avoiding that burdensome sense of urgency that is everywhere else in my world.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Practically Perfect

After a tiresome hot summer, high 50s, dry air, and no wind seems practically perfect to me. Surrounded by the yipping of the coyote. Another hilltop-sunrise-roadside-coffee stop for which I am profoundly grateful.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

First Seasonal Cool Air Blast

Not even the 20-25mph headwind could spoil my joy.  I started off right into it.  The temperature made it down into the upper 60s last night, and our forecast high for today is only 90.  North Texas residents are walking around with grins on their faces today.

I took a series of back roads up to Gainesville this morning.  Riding into the wind, but not fighting it.  I enjoyed watching the wide open spaces roll slowly by, but anticipated the exhilaration of a good strong tailwind at the turnaround point in my loop.  Got a new high speed mark for the MAP today.

The forecast low temperature for tomorrow morning is 55.  Wow.  I think I'll get up early, pack some coffee, and ride out to a nice spot and enjoy the refreshment.  Just the thing before meeting with other local christians on a lovely Sunday morning where we can collectively give thanks to God.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Monday, September 3, 2012

Another Day, Another Bike, Another Bridge

In the comments after my last post, Scott (Herringbone) mentioned wood bridges.  We don't have many of those down here, but they never fail to capture my interest.   In contrast to the old one-laner shown in my last post, today's bridge is modern, wide, and includes a steel truss.  I like to slow down when I ride across this one.

I was finally able to get the tire properly seated in the rim on the MAP, and enjoyed a couple of hours out on the geared bike this morning.  So it was another day, another bike, and another bridge.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Fixed Gear Mixed Terrain Metric

There are long stretches with no shade, and I was a little intimidated by the forecast.  It was quite a workout, but it worked out just fine.  Great ride.

I wanted to try a route that added some new roads.  After my flat tire a couple of weeks ago, I seem to have mounted my rear tire off-center (yes, Hetre on Velocity rim) and I was too lazy to fix it last night.  So I rolled the Quickbeam today.

Turns out the the new roads are excellent.  But there was enough climbing on this hot summer day to motivate me to get that tire/rim thing resolved...soon.

I like these old one lane steel truss bridges.  I think I'll come back by this one again.  Maybe next time with more gears.