Sometimes we don’t feel like writing. Today is one of those days. There was no one to play with so I took off on my bike alone. It was going to be just a short ride, but the morning was too nice and I kept going. Again over the bridge into New Bedford to ride along the waterfront. Crossing the bridge I saw a couple of cigarette boats mooring at the marina.
On the return ride, I rode into the marina and was told that I had just a few short minutes to get to the barrier gate in the middle of the harbor to see the dozens of cigarette boats begin their poker run. Like the motorcycle runs, these boats were big, loud and gaudy. I thought it would be cool, but as they passed the best I could muster was “ehhh”. Lots of the spectators were thrilled but personally I couldn’t see the point of having one of these. I like the photos that these boats are not the subject better.
Years ago I would find something funny or unusual on the web and conclude my weekday blog with Friday Funnies. This YouTube definitely makes the cut as a Friday Funny. These two at the end of this post are a riot.
For now though, from today’s bike ride, are some of the architecture of Old Fairhaven and the Whaling Historic National Park in New Bedford, MA.
As always, click any photo for big. Click again for bigger
8:15 AM gathering for an 8:30 start. I’ll be in McDonalds a block away at 7:30 for coffee if you want to join me.
This is a flat intermediate paced ride visiting the coastal towns of Mattapoisett and Marion MA. There are some spectacular sights on this ride. Bring your camera. Bring along a lunch if you wish but there are plenty of places to grab a quick bite along the route. We will be stopping at Plumb Corner for a break and regrouping at the 23 mile mark
As always, click and photo for big. Click again for bigger
The ride in Tiverton, RI last night was a bust. No big deal for this retired guy. I’ll do a long ride tomorrow morning. Well, tomorrow morning arrived and I remembered I am playing tennis tonight. No big deal for this retired guy. I’ll do a long ride tomorrow. Tomorrow will come and I’ll be lucky to walk after a couple hours of tennis tonight. I did find a solution to those next day lactic acid filled burning legs. An ice bath after tennis.
Filling a tub with the coldest water possible out of the faucet, then sitting in it, is very difficult. Last year the best I could do was kneel in the tub. Last week however, I tried the frog in the boiling water system. The one that says if you drop a frog in very hot water it will jump out. But, if you put a frog in cool water and slowly bring it to a boil, the frog will allow itself to be cooked. I sit in an empty tub and turn the cold water on so it flows very slowly, gradually opening the faucet as I adjust to the shock. It’s not easy, but it’s doable. It’s amazing how fast the lactic acid recovery is by a simple ice bath. Or in my case, a cold bath. It’s common for pro athletes to do the ice bath after a game.
There was time to do a ride around town today. Fairhaven, MA is a waterfront town within sight of the western side of Cape Cod and on a clear day, Martha’s Vineyard. A camera is an essential bike component for any bike blogger worth their salt. Sometimes a photographer begins the day with a theme and there are other times, like today, that we simply pay attention to the world and stay ready for what ever happens. There was a lot going on today.
There was a rally for the volunteers for Saturday’s Buzzard Bay Swim. It was too good an evening not to ride my bike the four miles to the gathering and the waterfront was abuzz with activity.
It was a quiet ride home but I did stop at the salt marsh to watch all the activity in the water. Duck families, egrets, lots of small birds like robins, starlings and others scrambling for a last minute meal, making a racket with their screams. Needless to say, the nine feet of snow we had on the ground a few short weeks ago is nothing but a fond memory.
As always, click any photo for big. Click again for bigger.
If you ride a bike a lot, you know that you see so much more going on around you that passes by unnoticed if your in a car. Today was one of those days that a ride was in order, but a club ride, even one of the most popular local rides, just didn’t fit the bill.
There was no plan to go anywhere in particular. It was simply a beautiful day to ride a bike. The Phoenix Bike Path in Fairhaven, MA, takes us close to the New Bedford bridge that crosses the Acushnet river into the city. When I got to the span, the bridge was opened to boat traffic. I usually try to photograph the boat going through the opening. On this day I looked back to see a wonderful perspective of Fairhaven. Taking multiple shots playing with the zoom, aperture or shutter speed, gives a photographer a much better chance of getting that really good shot.
As I progressed into the city, I came across a food festival at Pier 3 and a dog festival at Buttonwood Park. From the park my ride took me on an easy spin to the south end where I stopped and chatted with some friends for a few minutes. At the end of the peninsula the long line at Clark’s Point Creamery was a big help in my resisting stopping for a dairy treat. Fort Rodman, Fort Taber, and East Beach were spectacular this day.
On the return crossing into Fairhaven on the bridge, the crew of Captain Leroy’s deep sea fishing trip, were filleting the days catch for the patrons who were loading up their bus for the long return ride to New Jersey. Once back in Fairhaven at Cushman Park, the local track club was in the middle of the Jr. events.
On the club ride, I may have gotten into a pace line, put my head down, and hammered for a couple of hours. Today was a mellow, fun ride that really hit the spot. The club rides are OK. The rides with no destination can be the best ride. Either way a bike is so much better than climbing into a car, blasting the radio and trying to beat yellow lights, and the other cars to the next light.
The few photos of today’s ride are set to music using Cyberlink Power Director 13.
For better quality, click the Vimeo link at the bottom right of the video
A small group rode a historical tour of the area. New Bedford and Fairhaven have a Revolutionary, Civil and WWII history that is unique to coastal areas . Today’s 17 mile ride brought the group to Fort Rodman, East and West Beaches, Palmers Island, the Harbor Walk and Fort Phoenix, that included a historical narrative of each location. Everyone’s favorite was the ride around the southern peninsular of New Bedford. The stories of quahogs, hamburgers, military, amusement parks, houses of ill repute and lighthouses are all part of the history of the point.
The city of New Bedford was free city during the time of the slavery. They were welcome and protected from the slave hunters by local residents and it’s mayor Rodney French.
French was a Free-Soiler – a pre-Civil War political party that opposed slavery and the admission of slave states into the Union. His actual political affiliation is dubious. I have come across documents that state he was a Democrat and others that state he was a Republican. We do know that he was a delegate to Republican National
Convention from Massachusetts in 1856 and that he was considered a “Black” Republican because of his anti-slavery or abolitionist platform.
His anti-slavery stance did not make him very popular among his peers and the aristocrats of society. In fact, this put his career and life in harm’s way often. He lost many a business relationship and opportunity, surely including revenue, and especially in pro-slavery North Carolina.
We will be riding around the point of New Bedford on Rodney French Boulevard. Clarks Cove will be on our right at the beginning of the Blvd. At the end of the point we will enter Fort Rodman, whereon September 5th and 6th, 1778, the British
landed 4000 troops marching through and destroying much of New Bedford. The troops marched inland along the west shore of the Acushnet River to Acushnet, then came south through Fairhaven to Sconticut Neck.
At this time the British drove a group of 34 local militiamen under the command of Timothy Ingraham from Fort Phoenix, burned the barracks, broke up the gun platforms and smashed all but one of the cannons.
When the fort was rebuilt following the 1778 attack, it was named Fort Phoenix after the mythical bird which rose from its own ashes.
The original fort was built by Capt. Benjamin Dillingham and Eleazer Hathaway between 1775 and 1777. It was outfitted with eleven cannon, several of which had been captured in the Bahamas by John Paul Jones.