Moving On

The original purpose behind The Fourteen Percent Ride has long since been fulfilled. So, I've decided that Mighty Proud will be the last posting. It just seems right.

But, don't worry. Or maybe you should. In any event, I plan to continue. I'll keep riding. And writing. Click here to come along in my new blog ~ The Long White Line. <-- check it out!


As I've ridden for the last two years, I've picked up on the fact that Shirley, my darling wife, has been more worried about my safety than impressed with my "accomplishments." How do I know this? Well, when I'd come back and tell her, for example, that I'd hit 53.6 mph going down FO, she'd reply, "I don't want to hear it." Being the sensitive sort I figured out, after many such comments, that just maybe we were not on the same page here. But last week, she told me that she would "greatly reduce her focus on the 'fear for my safety' issue." We talked about the tour, looked at some maps, researched nutrition suggestions on the internet, and so on, just enjoying the idea of the ride. How nice is that? Thank you, Shirley!

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

It Was a Lark!

There's nothing like a relaxing ride with which to start a nice Saturday morning. And it was nothing at all like a relaxing ride that we took last Saturday. More like an 83 mile sprint, in my estimation. Riding with Bill - sort of - it was a 4 hour 30 minute dash to Pepin, Wisconsin. We started off crossing the Mississippi River at La Crosse then climbing Apple Blossom Drive in La Crescent, Minnesota. Our first stop was Winona, 26 miles to the north, which is, of course, why we spent the next hour riding west. We did not go to Rochester, but I could sense it just over the next rise. If you look at a map, you'll see that the Mississippi River follows a northwesterly track as it separates Minnesota and Wisconsin so riding west is a necessary condition of arriving in Winona.

Leaving Winona we set our sights on Wabasha, Minnesota. Now we were riding the shoulder of the four-lane Highway 61 with a pretty good breeze pushing us along. About five miles from Wabasha, I caught up with Bill who was sitting on his bike, waiting. He pointed to a building across the highway, asked if I'd ever been there. What I noticed was a sign promising Ice Cream and Road Food (I did not ask). No, I'd not been here so we crossed the highway (carefully, of course), me thinking we were going in for something unique in the way of ice cream or that I would learn something about road food. I was to find out, however, that the cafe was just part of Lark Toys, a marvelous store featuring handmade wooden toys, a toy museum of sorts and a magnificent, working carousel. The owner of the shop had carved all of the animals on the ride and they were wonderful. Intricate, colorful, fanciful and part of a working carousel. I brought Shirley here on Sunday and we watched a group of excited youngsters riding the aniamls and their imaginations around and around to the tune of On Wisconsin. Click on the link to check out Lark Toys.

Leaving Lark, we crossed back into Wisconsin at Wabasha, rode through Nelson, Wisconsin and were sooner than I had expected at our destination: Pepin, Wisconsin. The plan was to meet Shirley and Eileen, who were driving up, for lunch at the Harbor View Cafe. We had a chance to unwind from the ride while waiting for them to arrive, after which we enjoyed an excellent lunch. We know the halibut was good, as three of us ordered the same meal. We'll just have to go back to sample more of the menu, which is written on a blackboard and changes daily.

The bikes were packed into the back of the car for the drive home. Eighty three miles in four and a half hours. A Lark.

Several rides this week bring my 2007 total to 4252.8 miles. Now, only 747.2 to go!

No comments: