Feed on


Man, I’ve been just plain itching to go somewhere! Preferably on my bicycle, with all my necessary gear stuffed into panniers and/or bunjied on to a rack. What really kicked it into gear was meeting up with and hanging out with Jacquie Phelan & the 42-Below North team (and subsequently reading her blog and some of the other participants’ stories). I spent a fair bit of time chatting with Dan, who was from Florida and had a fair bit of bicycle touring (supported and unsupported) behind him, and we swapped stories about the cool shit you learn from being on the road. How to keep sanitary, what’s good to eat to keep yourself going, and the joys of finding a really good spot to relieve yourself!

Given financial and time-constraint considerations, that’s not happening this year, but I am holding on to the hope that we can do a little touring up in Wisconsin’s extensive state parks system next fall (come on 2010!).

So, we’re not going to be doing anything particularly epic, but we do have a number of fun minibreaks planned for, as well as the typical roster of excellent autumnal activities.

As far as traveling goes, we’re starting off by heading up to Omaha this weekend-ish to visit my sister and her family and help Max ring in his second birthday (which was Wednesday, actually) I scored a big ol’ tub of Duplo blocks which are surefire kid-pleasers and can be integrated in with the regular Lego stash after he gets old enough to be trusted with choking hazards.
Here’s my Mom and the little guy groovin’ on some bubbles from the last time they were down in KC visiting.

I know Chasm & ChrisGo, under the umbrella of Team Frank Stallone are planning another guerrilla urban cyclocross race, tentatively slated for 9-9-09. If the last TFS urban cyclocross race is anything to go by, this ought to be a damn good time!

I’ve got another event brewing, scheduled for 10-3-09, the Tour De Tetanus. I’m not 100% sure of the format of this “race” but I can assure you that it will be a mixed-media scavenger hunt, alley-crawl, and dumpster dive. Scoring will be determined by the time in which you complete the race, the number of items from the list collected, and how abjectly filthy you return. There may also be a photographic proof component. We shall see. The only think I can guarantee is that the prizes will be absolutely fabulous.

Then of course, there’s the traditional cyclocross season, which tends to be a lot of fun. I’m still not convinced that I need to actually do cyclocross. Not when I can be one of the many dog-bringing, coffee-sipping, photo-snapping CX spectators! I’m also keeping my fingers crossed for extreme silliness at the Halloween ‘cross race. I don’t know what Joel will cook up to do, but I am sure it will be pretty silly.

For my own self, plans continue apace for my Minnie Pearl costume. I’ve got a good-sized length of green-and-white floral calico for the dress, and another length of pea-green organdie for the petticoats. I’m looking around for a smallish straw hat which I can then load down with artificial flowers (of which I have a decent stash) and of course the iconic $1.98 paper tag. I reckon I will probably wear character shoes, adapted for street use by the addition of rubber half-soles and heel caps in place of metal taps.

But before there in Halloween, there’s Bonktoberfest, and AFAIK, we’re going to manage to go this year. Last year we were busy crossing Tennessee while the Earthriders were camping, riding, and whooping-it-up down in Arkansas, but I think we will be camping, riding, and whooping with the best of ’em this year. They’ve moved the destination from Syllamo to Ouachita this year, and I’m pretty stoked. Syllamo is idyllic, to say the least, but Ouachita is no less lovely, and the location offers two different trail systems, the Ouachita and the Womble, and from all accounts, the Womble is much more beginner friendly than anything available out at Syllamo. I continue to be a mediocre-trending-toward-shitty mountain biker, so the allure of beginner friendly trails certainly piques my interest.

The river and the surrounding countryside are a draw in and of themselves. In years past, when we’ve gone to Ouachita for the Ouachita Challenge, while Joel was out hammering it home on the trails, I was out cruising the back-roads and digging on the gorgeous scenery.

Later on, after Halloween, but before Thanksgiving, we’re planning another long weekend, this time up to the wilds of Northwestern Nebraska, to visit my folks. We’ve been trying to coordinate a visit up to their house, but their schedules and our finances had long conspired against us. But by early November, Mom & Dad don’t have any traveling or major obligations in sight and we should be able to eke out the time and fundage to get out of town and go see them.

So yeah, no big crazy trips this year, but we’ll be getting out of town on three different weekends (two of them “long weekends”) and doing plenty of fun stuff around town.

I think this winter we’re going to be aiming at getting more good low-budget fun going on once more. Look for more gravity races, another chariot race, and maybe, just maybe, another incarnation of the Drag Races. And of course, there’ll most likely be the return of Street Cred sometime in February. It almost reconciles me to the inevitability of winter.

Leave a Reply