Sunday, November 23, 2008

6000 Miles

As anticipated, Bleriot rolled over 6000 miles yesterday. I was on Stringtown Road, valiantly trying to keep up with Diane and Jason, so, other than inner glee, no pics.

The Oregon Randonneurs Wine Country Populaire is held every year, usually the Saturday after Thanksgiving, but this year, it was the Saturday before. The route is just shy of 70 miles, starts in Forest Grove, does a north and west loop before heading south, includes an out and back to Cherry Grove, then to Gaston, Yamhill, Carlton, Lafayette, and back to Forest Grove.

It started out at the very civilized hour of 9am; I was riding with Diane and Jason. Jason's Sekine was getting immense amounts of love from other riders (late-70's vintage, assembled in Alberta by First Peoples). He was bemused.

It was grey and foggy. I was, of course, overdressed (post hypothermia stress syndrome), and stopped along Stringtown Rd to pull off a layer. I eventually found Diane and Jason stopped on Dilley Rd where Plumlee drops in, and Jason looked right at me, so I kept going. I excel at riding slowly, so I need to not stop much. I figured they'd start up again and catch me. Noooooo. Heading south on Hwy 47 to the Cherry Grove turnoff. Nooooooo. I saw Peg and Lesli up ahead and was trying to catch them (no luck), and leapfrogged some with Duane and ? on Duane's tandem, and Michael W and Allison on Michael's recumbent tandem. Michael and Allison could stop and faff any old time, because when they were going, they were usually doing 20+. That's a big engine up front, yes indeed.

Finally, on the last few rollers into Cherry Grove, Jason came riding up. They didn't see me :-)

Saw several riders heading back out - the Kramer, Del, others I didn't know. There was a big crowd at the Baptist church (the info control in Cherry Grove; Susan is going to run out of questions soon :-) ) Snacks, filling out of cards, flipping of maps. Michael wanted me to take a picture of him and Alison, but, as my hands were full of gloves and brevet card, and my mouth was full of Sweet Salty Peanut bar, I handed the camera off to Jason.

Off again, in a larger group. Most everyone missed the right onto Bates Rd, I yelled, and they came back (I may be slow, but I don't get lost TOO often.) Through Gaston, where many peeled off in search of a restroom. We kept on going, heading south on Spring Hill to Laughlin Rd, the next control. Philippe was there with coffee, fruit, Fig Newtons (I ate a handful of those, and my banana).

Off to Yamhill, where Jason stopped in search of a facility (I kept going), through Carlton. I had thought to stop at the yarn store there, but, really, the hot tub back at the Grand Lodge was calling. Into Lafayette, with a stop at Carneceria Abastos (food) and the blue room down the hill by the baseball field. I love the crosswalk across 99W in Lafayette. Cars STOP.

Then the autopilot route back to the Grand Lodge. At some point along there, I had a shadow, but it was brief. There was a bit of a tailwind, which I SO appreciated. We arrived, 6:09 after we left, and quickly adjourned to the hot tub. Brian L was already soaking, and Michael and Allison showed up shortly thereafter :-)

Delightful dinner afterward with Brian, Susan, Peg, Allison B, ?, Jason, Duane, ? and me. Peg's new custom frame is built, and she's working through the component issue. As am I, but I've got over a year to work it out. (Bar ends or brifters? That is the crux of it.)

I did this ride at a pace somewhat above my customary rando pace, and, well, it hurt! So, today, when Fitz suggested we might ride to the Hillsdale Farmers' Market to get apples, I had to think about it for awhile. You know the result.

Put the u-lock and cable back on the Bleriot, and some lube on the chain, and off we went. The direct route is pretty much a straight shot down Beaverton-Hillsdale Hwy, and we weren't going to do THAT. Followed the Sunset Hwy bike path (headwind!) up to Hewett, up the block to Dosch, down Dosch to Sunset (first street past the stop sign at Hamilton, St Andrews Presbyterian on the left), left on Sunset all the way down to, and across Beaverton-Hillsdale, though a parking lot, and there we were. Locked up the bikes (1 u-lock and two heavy cables, plus 1 tree), and shopped.

Apples, rye bread from Fressen, a glorious bunch of parsley from Ayers farm (rode right past them on SpringHill yesterday), and a decadent tangerine brownie from The Brownie Farm. We went over there, because I wanted to know if they were raising brownies, or if the farming was done by the brownies.

Then home, via the southern route - into Multnomah Village (and if there was ever an argument for taking the lane, that's where you do it. Blatantly.) with a stop at Starbucks, then the glorious descent down Multnomah/Garden Home, hop onto the Fanno Creek Trail behind the Garden Home Rec Center, onto Allen, through the industrial park on Arctic, onto 5th, turn right to cut through the Park Plaza shopping center, which has a light to cross Beaverton-Hillsdale onto 107th, at which point the route home is quite clear.

My legs feel less heavy, so this was probably a good thing. This afternoon - Bleriot will have a bath. It is filthy...

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