Posted by: David | August 12, 2007

Weekend Rides

My daughter came over after the wife and I had finished our quasi-traditional Saturday morning breakfast (I make bacon, eggs, toast, and coffee for us- for a number of years it was turkey bacon, but lately it’s been thick-sliced pepper bacon from genuine swine), and brought her biking stuff, so we went for a little ride up 103 to South Road, Pleasant View, back down Fairgrounds Road into town and home. It was a warmup ride for me, and a nice chance to get caught up with my daughter’s current state of mind, which seems healthily optimistic. She’s about to immerse herself in school again- a concentrated post-baccalaureate program which confers a BSN. 

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We looked around the garden after getting back to the house.

After a few chores, I headed back out for a more extended ride. First south to Henniker. Nothing much to photograph, and not much happening mentally. Just pedalling. It was a lovely August afternoon. I think my mind was preoccupied with the narrative and photographs from a wonderful online journal of a cross-country solo bike tour recently completed by a nice doctor acquaintance of ours. Added it to my blogroll the other day, please check it out. What an incredible adventure – riding every day for a couple of months from one side of the USA to the other. Inspiring!

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Riding Saturday afternoon, seeing stuff like this. But it’s ALL GOOD.

In previous posts I’ve mentioned finding music CDs by the roadside. Saturday I found one in Weare, a few miles north of the John Stark Regional High School. It was one of those dark, ruby colored disks, and it looked like it’d been in the weather for at least a few weeks.

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Jackpot! A compact disc by the roadside.

I love finding these. It’s a chance to hear some new music. Skip ahead to bringing it home, washing it off an sticking it into the computer- it was not too badly scratched. It’s a music CD with only 2 tracks, both by Elliot Yamin. Yeah I know, who the hell is he? Well, apparently he’s an American Idol LOSER. But he’s got a MySpace site. You can hear the two tracks there-

  1. You Are The One
  2. Wait For You

Do we really need to look up the lyrics? This disc was definitely ejected from a car because of a relationship. My Unified Theory of Roadside CD Discards gains further support.

Or maybe a high school student who totally LOVES Elliot Yamin burned this CD for her  friend so that she could vote for him on the show. And the friend was too nice to tell her friend how much she HATES Elliot Yamin, but not too nice to pitch the disk out of her boyfriend’s car window. Hard tellin’.

In Weare I headed east on Route 77, toward Dunbarton and Concord. We lived in Weare eons ago and used to take this road to Concord. Passed this water treatment business with a couple of oddly placed signs. These signs belong to the “Ill-Considered Advertising” category.

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There’s a bigger sign with the water company’s name off-frame right.

Once in Dunbarton I headed north on Rt. 13, Jewett Road. My wife and I lived in a couple of places on that road in our early years together, and our late son Dan had been born at home in a small house on that same road. That birth was not an easy one, with his cord wrapped twice around his neck. Well that house disappeared some time ago, first noticed missing by me on a ride through here last summer. It was an odd shock not seeing it there last summer. That same feeling returned, but I took some pictures this time.

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This had been our driveway. We didn’t live there for too long.

 A little further up Jewett Road I got a flat. I was almost to Routes 202/9 when I ran over a nice old antiquey looking furniture tack. But I patched it up fairly readily, without even completely removing the tube, since the puncture was so easy to locate. I had to be home by 5:30 because we were going to a party/barbecue at 6:30 in downtown Bradford. Managed to rack up 60 miles on Saturday.

It was a nice party, and the host had told me that the aformentioned cross-country cycle touring guy and his wife, both doctors, would be there. We’ve known these fine people for a long time, and they also have a child with Down Syndrome (grown up now). They arrived at the party relatively late, but I did get plenty of time to cross-examine Carl on his journey, and we made some plans to ride on Sunday morning since they were staying in Bradford at their Lake Todd cottage.

… next morning, Sunday

We met on Route 103 just north of Main street and intended to ride my oft-ridden Henniker-Hillsborough loop. There was quite a bit of traffic but we made good conversation anyway. Coming down to Forest St. approaching Lake Massasecum he needed to stop to answer a page. We pulled in front of a house with a permanent yard sale consisting of two junky golf carts.

“Forgot to tell you that I’m on call” he said. He played with his Treo at length and finally got ahold of somebody where he works. While he’s trying to talk, some guy and his daughter are test-driving an ancient golf cart that’s been sitting by the road for months now with price tag “$950”. It was lawnmower engine noisy anyway, but also had a horrible grinding sound coming out of it. The ever-patient doctor imperceptibly rolled his eyes at the cacophony. The guy didn’t buy the crappy golf cart (and NOBODY WILL AT THAT PRICE people!) and Carl was able to resolve the medical issue before losing the connection.

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Crazy guy on a bike and cell phone. You can’t see the phone but he’s on it.

Our ride was quite pleasant and we talked about all kinds of things. Noticing how fast his cadence (revs of the crank) was I asked about it and learned something that might turn out to be pretty important. Apparenty cranking your pedals faster is more efficient for touring and racing both. I’ll have to experiment with that. I also learned that there has been a startling rise in the number of diagnoses of autism in the past decade. He set a pretty good pace, but I managed to keep up. I hope we can ride again sometime soon.

Ready for another busy week at work.

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