Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Fort McHenry

After a busy weekend in NYC and a couple of rainy days I got out for a bike ride with Kathleen this morning. We went around the Inner Harbor, then over to Federal Hill, where the sun was making it's appearance over the harbor.
We rode out to Fort McHenry, then back around through Federal Hill where I spotted yet another cool stone church.
At this rate I am sure that someday I will see them all. After that it was back through the Inner Harbor and home to get ready for a work day.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Suprise Encouter

After a few thunderstorms last night, this morning was a little muggy, but still a nice day out. I went out with the intent of finding Herring Run Park, but failed to go far enough. I ended up making a big loop around Baltimore instead. On my way out of the Inner Harbor I started passing a lot of joggers, and thought "wouldn't it be funny to see Kathleen now". Low and behold, there she was.
We met up on the corner of Eastern and President street, where she stole a drink from my water bottle before we both continued on home. Then a shower and off to work to get ready for Tunnels to Towers this weekend. I am doing the sound for the start, finish, and tunnel portions, and Kathleen is going to have a day in NYC and run the race on Sunday.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

The Lake

Another nice morning, I got up a little later than I wanted to, it was still dark out at 6:30, but when I rolled out at 7:05 the sun was coming up. I rode up to Lake Montibello and did a lap, stunning day out.
On the way back down I spotted another church, this one is only a few blocks down the hill from us.
Then off to the house for a shower & breakfast, then down to DC for a meeting.

Monday, September 20, 2010

New Statue

As promised, as part of today's ride, I swung through Highlandtown and checked out the new statue. There he was Frank Zappa, Baltimore's own rendered in bronze(?)
And they also renamed the block of Eastern Avenue in front of the Library in honor of Frank.
After that it was a ride around the neighborhood, then off to get ready for a Monday.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Down to Sparrows Point

Another beautiful fall day, temps in the low 80's and low humidity. Kathleen went with her mother to Hampden to window shop, and I scooted out for a ride. I went out Eastern Avenue (more on that later), and then out towards North Point (inadvertently). As I was riding along this caught my eye.
I have never seen purple plastic lawn flamingos before this, I am almost tempted to buy one, I think that there was a Ravens stuff shop in there somewhere. I went a little further out and ended up a Sparrows Point steel mill. The Russian (Servestal) company that currently owns it is trying to sell it, they are shuttering the plant right now, but they haven't shut down the blast furnace yet. Kind of weird, they just bought the plant a couple of years ago, and ramped up production at that time.
I rode out to the end of the plant where the shipyard used to be (they don't build ships there anymore) which ended up being a couple of miles down the road, the whole way covered by the factory. At the end of the road I shot this picture of the Key Bridge, probably built with steel from Sparrows Point.
Next up on the agenda was a snack, today it is the cherry flavored "extreme" sport beans, delicous and a little dose of caffeine to help the cause.
On my way back towards Fells Point I rode in on the Penisula expressway, and about halfway along there is a drawbridge. As I approached, the light turned red, and in the water was this guy.

As a consequence, up the drawbridge went, and under he went, you can see the top of his mast on the left of the bridge.
After he passed through, down the bridge came, and off I went.
Riding back through Dundalk I spotted this, football season is definitely in full swing here in Baltimore.
I rode back in on Easter Avenue, and in Highlandtown the road was closed for the unveiling of the statue of Frank Zappa, who was born here in Baltimore. They had a concert by Dweezil Zappa, and speeches by all of the local dignitaries. No word if they launched into a acappella version of "Catholic Girls" but I am sure the Baltimore Sun will have lots of info tomorrow in the paper. At some point soon I will have to ride by and see it.
Then back to the house for a shower, then a trip to the Brewers Art for dinner.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Fall Saturday

Today started with a trip to the shop to get some things that were forgotten by my crew at Pier 6 for the Several Species concert tonight. Once I got back I had some breakfast, then Kathleen and I went out for a ride. We went down through the Inner Harbor, where I had to pass this pace line of Segways.
I got a little further down the bike lane and realized that Kathleen wasn't behind me. So I waited a little bit, then went back to find her, only to discover she was back at the aquarium with a flat. Apparently she had called out to me but I was consumed with the task of passing the Segways and didn't hear her. We installed a new tube and found the piece of glass that caused it still stuck in the tire, then continued on out to Fort McHenry. On the way back we cut through Locust Point and the Tide Point complex, then along Key Highway back towards the Inner Harbor. On the way there we passed by the American Visionary Art Museum where I spotted this mounted on the roof.
Even more amazing is the building itself.
Then we rode up Calvert Street where I saw the Battle Monument (I had to look it up) commemorating the War of 1812.
We continued up to North Avenue, then back down Guilford to the Inner Harbor again, where I saw these women resplendent in their red hats.
We swung through Pier 6 to look in on the guys, then back to the house for a shower and some lunch.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

A quick spin

Just a run around Baltimore today, through the Inner Harbor then up to Station North before turning around to head back for the homestead. Caught city hall in a nice light though.
After that home and another work day.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Primary Election Day

Today was the Maryland primary elections. It was also another gorgeous day, so I took off earlyish in the morning to get a ride in before driving to NYC. I rode up to the Pagoda and caught this right before sunrise.
Then I rode out to Fort McHenry, which is still closed to bicycles, and then back to the firehouse down the street from us to vote. I was a bit concerned about leaving the bike outside while I voted, but there was a Baltimore Police officer there, so no worries. I did my thing, then caught this shot of my bike patiently waiting outside the polling place.
Of course it was waiting to ride the .3 miles back to the house so I could get my act together and head out to New York for my meeting.

Monday, September 13, 2010

It's Monday

Monday morning, and gorgeous weather, nice and cool. I took a spin around the neighborhood, and over into Greektown and Highlandtown. Nothing terribly exciting, but when I got back down to Boston & Fleet Streets there was none other than Bill Ferguson, drumming up more support.
Tomorrow is primary day, I am planning on getting up early and incorporated my civic duty into my bike ride, before heading off to NYC for a meeting.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Saturday on the West Side

Another gorgeous Fall type day today, and Kathleen was still out in Santa Fe visiting her dad, so I went out for a ride on the West Side. I rode through the Inner Harbor, then out to Carroll Park. It's football season here in Baltimore, the Ravens are on Monday Night football to open the season. At Carroll Park there were adult leagues of 20 somethings, I am assuming flag football of some sort, since it is co-ed.
On the next field over it was teens (I think) doing full contact.
Just after that is the start of the Gwynns Falls Trail proper it is really nice the way it goes through mostly green spaces from here to my work.
I rode out the Gwynns Falls Trail to where Frederick Road crosses it, then out Frederick road to the West. There is actually a bike path all the way out Frederick Road to the Beltway (for the most part), but sometimes it got really narrow.
I ended up riding way the hell out to Rolling Road, then looping back through Woodlawn and coming in via Gwynn Oak road. I passed all of the churches and groovy houses from last weekend, and came down Gwynns Falls Pkwy. I got off in a new neighborhood (to me) and spotted this old school bridge over the road right on the edge of the neighborhood.
On my back in towards downtown I spotted yet another church, the tree kind of ruins the view.
Then back to Fells Point and home. I stopped to pick up my traditional victory soda at the little market on Pratt Street, and when I cam out this group was working the doorbells in the neighborhood.
The Democratic Primary is in a week or so, and they were knocking on doors for Bill Ferguson, who I met a couple of weeks ago on a ride. Then it was back to the house, a shower, then washing both bikes, and the car before heading out to pick up Kathleen at the airport.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Late Start

I got out for a ride this morning, unfortunately a little later than I wanted to. A shame, as today was a gorgeous day, it seems that Fall is moving into Baltimore for real. Cool temps and low humidity are back. Since I was running late I just pedaled around Canton for the most part, but as usual, something new always pops up. I spotted this mural on the side of a rowhouse at Highland and Boston.
Then right across the street another.
Very cheery first thing in the morning I thought. Then I rode on home and headed out to work. Oh for what it's worth, we did in fact win the parade again, undefeated for another year. For those of you that are wondering, this is what a half-million watts of PA on a flatbed looks like. This is the front of the float.
And here it is from the back.
The band and hangers on go in the middle, and the amplifiers are under the stage. I'm already booked for next year :)

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Good Morning

Today was a beautiful day, I rode out to Ft McHenry and back, saw lots of joggers, dog walkers and the like. Didn't take a lot of pictures, just one really, but it sums up the morning, absolutely stunning.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Labor Day

Another gorgeous day today, after a very long one yesterday in New York. I provided PA for two Caribbean Festival floats this year. I went up to do some money stuff, and meet my clients in person, as I had only talked to them on the phone prior. I also found out that we are the undisputed heavyweight champion of the Carribean Floats. I have been doing a float for 4 years now, and we have never been beaten :) The judging seems to be on the volume of the music coming from the float, for this year's floats we put 500,000 Watts of PA system per on two floats. At any rate, the parade was today, I will call my clients tomorrow and see if the reign continues. If we won again I am getting one of those prize fighter belts for myself to wear up there next year. Back to the subject at hand, Kathleen and I went out for a ride today, given the option, Kathleen decided on the low hill route, so we went out towards Dundalk, which is fairly flat. It turned out to be fairly windy as well, but a beautiful day overall. We rode out to Sparrows Point, where I took my worst picture yet.
That is the steel mill in behind the road sign stuff. We continued on towards North Point State Park, on the way there we stopped because I spotted this fabulous building.
I am not sure I would be comfortable putting my money there, but Kathleen pointed out the new roof and windows and suggested that maybe it was getting renovated. Kathleen also had a goo thing there (energy food in a semi liquid form), which I tried a sample of, I think I will stick with the jelly beans. A little further along we spotted this.
Totally Baltimore beehive there hon. A little further along we made it to the park, and rode down to the waters edge.
The park was hopping with families having Labor Day picnics and such, lots of kids running around, barbecuing, and generally taking it easy. Then we rode back towards home, here is an action shot (no look picture by the way) of Kathleen right behind me on Eastern Avenue.
We rode up Eastern into Highlandtown, and then went up Gough towards the park, the city skyline was very nice in the afternoon sun.
We cut through Patterson Park on the way home, lots of activity there as well, then climbed up the misery hill and back to the homestead. Here is Kathleen back in the garage having some more water.
We got cleaned up, grilled salmon and had dinner on the deck to round out the day.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Nice Day

Today was a good day, we got up early and waterproofed the deck, Kathleen weeded the small part of our lot that isn't house, we ran a bunch of errands, and went for a bike ride. It was reasonably cool today (only about 80 degrees) but more importantly, the humidity was down. The only downer was it was windy, I am assuming it was coming from the backside of Hurricane Earl. I thought it would be less windy on the Gwynns Falls Trail, so that is where we headed. We went out Fleet Street through Harbor East, and the clouds were rolling through.
But that didn't stop us, it was going through much to fast to be rain. We continued on out towards Carroll Park (Pride of the Parks according to the sign at the entrance) and saw a info board that talked about Carroll Park, but also about this building.
It turns out this was built in the 30's as a Montgomery Ward distribution warehouse, and also had a retail store built in. It is a huge building, very impressive. It has been rehabbed into office space, and out in front is this piece of art.
We decided it must have been a slide to get things from one floor to the next in the warehouse. Right after that the Gwynns Falls trail turns into a proper bike path, and we rode through a bunch of parks that dot the route. Here is an action shot of Kathleen performing evasive maneuvers as I veer towards her.
A little further along we got to the park that always has football practice going on, and today there was an actual game.
From here we rode up to Wetheredsville Road, and ended up at my work, effectively riding my usual commute route backwards. So we had some sport beans in the shop parking lot (orange for me, watermelon for Kathleen) and then rode out North Forest Park to Garrison Road. Along Garrison Road there a ton of churches. This one was so tall that I had to change camera settings to fit it in.
A block down the street these two are about 4 doors apart.

It's a really interesting older neighborhood, there a ton of late 1800's Victorians out here, some nicely restored, others completely dilapidated.
We rode down to Gwynns Falls Parkway and bombed down it (it is almost all downhill) to Druid Lake Park. Being Labor Day weekend, all of the picnic pavilions were in use.
I thought this one was cool with its historically correct type paint job.
We rode through the park to Falls Road, and back down towards the homestead. On Baltimore Street we passed through the Block, where the bulk of the strip clubs are. It's kinda seedy, but definitely a part of Baltimore.
A few blocks further down Baltimore we passed by the community garden, you can rent plots here from the city and do a little gardening if you are so inclined. Kathleen pointed out the flowers on the fence that are made from cans and bottles, a nice touch.
Then it was off to the homestead for dinner and some lounging around.