It’s tournament time for high school soccer. It’s the only sport I played growing up and stopped at age 51. I also spent 40 years coaching at different levels, so I guess you could call me “avid.”
There were three games last night and I had to choose. My alma mata was playing, one of the schools I coached and a really good local team. I chose the really good team to ride my bike to watch, Dartmouth High, and wasn’t disappointed.
At the half it was 3-0 and early in the second 40, Dartmouth got their fourth. I was feeling the beginnings of rain coming on and decided to leave early for the 7 mile ride home. I got a little wet but not bad. Riding through the city I could see driver eyeing me and couldn’t help wondering if they were envious of me riding in the soft rain on a mild evening , or thinking, “oh that poor guy. He must have lost his drivers license.”
Ride starts and ends at Moby Dick Brewing on Union and South Water Street in New Bedford. Across from the YMCA.
Rides begin at 6 PM
All biking skill levels are welcome, no one’ll be left behind. Expect a joyful-conversational pace of 10 mph, but the group will determine our speed. This ride will end at Moby Dick Brewing on Union and South Water in New Bedford.
This week we will ride the two New Bedford Elevated Harbor Walks at a casual pace. The ride is mostly bike path and bike lanes with some quiet streets at the start. Bring a lock, bike lights, a spare tube in case you get a flat. Most of all, bring your camera. The vistas are spectacular.
340 of us put our bikes on Trucks at South Station in Boston that transferred them to Southboro, Ma. We filled five double deck commuter rail trains with riders for the one hour ride to meet up with our bikes. There was also an additional 2530 others who made their own way to the start of the ride. Once in Southboro, we located truck E and retrieved our bikes to begin the four mile ride to the official start of the Marathon in Hopkinton. It began with the steepest hill that saw many many get off their bikes to walk. This is one of my top rated rides and like runners do for the Marathon, this is definitely a bucket list event.
It almost didn’t happen. Last year on this date we got a snow storm. This year, a wicked pissah Nor’easter with heavy rain and snow mix throughout the day put the ride in jeopardy. Around 8 PM the storm had abated but the night was sultry. I got the Scott SUB 40, (speedy urban bike, 40) lit up for a night ride and headed to the town center.
The bike path was dark and deserted. A rabbit scooted across defying the odds of the two of us, the only two souls out, crossing paths. A mile out, and a mile back was the extent of the ride. Being out alone at night. witnessing the tail end of a storm heading out to sea, was priceless. I will tell people how nice, in spite of the stormy weather, the ride felt. Most, even many who ride bikes, will not understand. But there are those who will know this feeling.
I took my RV to the Ford shop because of a recall notice. My camper sits on a Ford Transit chassis. I also asked for a price for an oil change and installing a trailer hitch on the front end so I could transport my bikes. My rack is the same that public buses use. It was such a nice day so I decided to ride around town while waiting for the call that the camper was ready.
When I retrieved the Transit, the dealer gave me a good price for the oil change, but his answer for the front hitch gave me pause. He said, “Ford does not make the hitch I wanted but he could get one from Camping World and install it for 3-4 hundred dollars. My pause was the he was going to get it from the place I bought the RV and my power of deduction says that I could save a bit of money by going to the source of the hitch. However…………. Camping world prices are premium. I’m going to get a quote from them but I’m not sure they will be less expensive. It sounds crazy, but in the world of RV’s, things are different. (not to mention, expensive). We’ll see. As for the recall. All the parts passed the tests and no defect was found. Naturally, the dealer replaced them.
I did have a decent ride in the city, with the sun shining, and the temps hovering around 50ish.
The day began just a little bit cool. I decided to ride the 7 miles to yoga at the local Boys/Girls club. I just happened to look up and saw the wall above my bike stating that this was the third oldest club in the country. I have been going here for two years for yoga, putting my bike in the same spot and it took this long to look up.
Another long unnoticed item on a regular route is this closed gas station. So many have tried to make a go of this but the location is crap. It’s on the edge of a bridge spanning the river that opens every hour. People have always hesitated to stop here for gas out of fear of getting stuck when the bridge opens. The prices say clearly how long this place has been closed.
The ride was intended to be longer, but the weather turned sour with dropping temperatures, wind and drizzle limited me to 16 miles. I did make one more stop at a recently closed motel that was a haven for transients, pimps and people with drug problems.
Last night was the annual South Coast Bikeway Summit in New Bedford, MA. I was asked to lead a ride for those who wanted to bike to the “bike summit”. This is my third year volunteering to do this ride. No one has ever shown up to ride with me. I got a few e-mails asking about the route and times. It was a beautiful late afternoon to ride. 38F, no wind and sunny at the 4:30 PM start. The temperature promised to hold and the wind had no intent on picking up before the 7:30 PM return ride. With all that, I wondered, “will anyone show besides Geoff?” No one did. Geoff was there, but we did not see each other before I rode off. He did call me and we were able to hook up about a mile down the road.
It was a really nice ride that took us over the new elevated walk/bike way built on top of the hurricane barrier at West Beach. The return night ride took us over the walk/bike way on East Beach. (Fort Rodman is at the point of the New Bedford peninsula that in my soccer pre season training days was a very pretty four mile loop along Buzzard’s Bay and Clark’s Cove).