Sunday, February 26, 2012

Sunday Spin

Today turned out to be a nice day after yesterdays big windstorm and cold, so Kathleen and I went out for a ride.   It was the big experiment today, being the tinkerer that I am, I went out yesterday and got a set of tubeless tires for the bike, as the new wheels Kathleen got me for Christmas are tubeless compatible.   We spent a couple of hours last night mounting them up and putting the sealant in, so today was the first real world experiment.   The beauty of the tubeless tires is you can run them at a lower pressure, so they do more to insulate you from the bumps and such on the road, as they are not subject to pinch flats like tubed tires are.  Also because of the sealant, hopefully flat tires will be a thing of the past.  My first impression is that they are great, we rode across bricks and cobbles today, and they were much smoother over the rough stuff.   Anyhow, we headed initially towards the Inner Harbor, where they are busy fixing some curbing/landscaping along the bike path so the route was diverted through this little bit.
Then a quick stop at Race Pace, they had lent me a longer tire lever to put the new tires on, thankfully it wasn't needed. We kibbitzed a little at the shop, and weighed Kathleen's bike (19lbs) before heading out to noodle around. We continued on over towards the West Side, and passed this bit of street art at one of the storm drains.
Right across the street was this bit of art, the sign was completely unreadable.
A little further up we rode by this block of North Strickler Street where the folks had painted up their row houses in a pretty colorful palette.
Then it was back around towards the homestead down Druid Hill Avenue, first passing this mural.
Then a block later this one.
After that it was back to the house to get cleaned up and figure out a plan for dinner.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Snow, what snow?

It was supposed to snow today, of course the weathermen got it wrong again, and instead it was partly cloudy.   Kathleen and I decided to go out for a ride to check out her new chain (which she installed herself :) courtesy of the Park Tools School she has been doing).   We wanted something easy, I am still recovering from my cold, and Kathleen had gone out with a womens group ride yesterday and did 40 miles.  So we did the easy ride out to Fort McHenry and back.  Here's Kathleen following me up Fort Avenue towards Fort McHenry.
We got out to the fort, and there in the docks was the Atlantic Tramp, great name for a ship.
Then it was back around the Inner Harbor, and into harbor east where this contraption was blocking the way.
It's a temporary boiler for the building there, apparently a couple of weeks ago there was no hot water for the building (Kathleen's gym is in there) so this is the solution for the time being. We continued on home, where I noticed that Kathleen's new helmet doesn't miss an opportunity for advertising.
Then it was back to the house to get cleaned up and veg out.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Valentine's Day

Today is of course Valentine's Day, so I decided to get my act together and start riding in the morning again.   I got up reasonably early and went out for a ride, with a bit of a sore throat, and I finished the day with a full blown cold.  Thanks to my coworkers who keep coming into work sick.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Sunny Sojourn

It's been a while since my last ride, it has been cold here, and I am a wimp.   But as luck would have it, I had a show in Miami so Kathleen and I went down early for a little R and R.   We rented a fabulous apartment in South Beach for the weekend, and rented bikes from a local shop, Miami Beach Bicycle Center.   Saturday morning rolled around, and on the advice of the shop, we headed out towards Biscayne Key.   Here is Kathleen leading the way over the Venetian Causeway, which is one of the bridges that connects Miami Beach with Miami.
This is a view of some of the houses that are built on the man-made islands in the middle of the channel.

A little further along provided this view of the cruise ships in the Port (also a man-made island).
We cut through downtown over to the Rickenbacker Causeway, here is the view from the top of the bridge (it's about 100' tall to let the sailing ships through).  You can see the other side of the port with the cruise ships in the distance.
Here is Kathleen leading the way down the other side of the bridge, we followed the two guys in front of her for quite a while, it seemed that they were having a very spirited discussion the whole time in Italian.
We reached Biscayne Key, and spotted these guys hanging out on the side of the road.
We continued on through the developed part to Bill Baggs Cape State Park where we took a little break at the end of the land there.
Then we turned around and headed back, here is downtown Miami basking in the sun from the top of the bridge.
Then it was back to the apartment, but no ride is complete without an over the shoulder no look picture.
The next day came early, as Kathleen was doing the Miami Half Marathon, and it started at 6:15AM in downtown Miami in front of the American Airlines Arena (home of the Miami Heat NBA team).  I opted to stay in bed (as opposed to her 3:30AM alarm) and got up a little later to ride around and shoot pictures of her during her race (as I do).   So my alarm went off at 6:00AM and I got my crap together and scooted out to spectate.   The first thing that happens is they go from the Arena across the MacArthur Causeway to Miami Beach, so I waited where the causeway meets Miami Beach for her.   A little while later there she was, already 3 miles into the 13.1 on tap for the day (turquoise top, pink shorts).
I got going and passed her a little ways down the road.
The route winds through the southern part of South Beach, then up Ocean Drive.
As I was sprinting up the parallel street to get ahead of her, I spotted these cars, that pink Caddy is so Miami.
Then back over to Ocean Drive.
Here they are turning back away from the beach.
As I scooted up the road, I passed by the New World Symphony building, the sculptures outside also have an audio component, so it is a multimedia sculpture.

Here is Kathleen rounding the corner onto Dade Boulevard.
Where they were serenaded by the Miami Beach High School drum corps.

I rolled down the road to shortcut the loop that the runners took through Bayshore, and waited by this groovy example of Miami Beach architecture.
While I was waiting I couldn't help but notice that the tutu was a popular running accessory.

Eventually Kathleen came through, then I headed down the road.
A little further along a group of women from Lululemon were on the side of the road cheering the runners on.  You can't quite read the sign to the left, but it says "You've got stamina, call me"
Then it was onto the Venetian Causeway to head back to Miami proper.

The Miami Fire Department sent their fire boat out to put on a show for the runners, that's the MacArthur Causeway right behind it.
Here is Kathleen just coming back into Miami, this was the last time I saw her till we got back to the apartment, somehow I missed her at the finish line, and with 25000 runners it was just too chaotic to try and meet up right afterwords, so I headed back to Miami Beach.
We spent the rest of the day checking out the area, and had a great dinner up on Lincoln Ave. Then next morning rolled around, and before we checked out of the Apartment we got one more ride in, here are the bikes in the apartment waiting to go out.
We headed out into a gorgeous morning, and decided to ride up A1A which runs up the coast from Miami Beach towards the north.   More expensive houses on the one side.
And gorgeous ocean on the other.
Palm trees and sunshine.
We passed these two on our way back, then they passed us back, which gave me the opportunity to shoot this picture of a major fashion faux pas, they are wearing the straps of their bibshorts over their jerseys, they are supposed to go underneath the jersey.
Then back into Miami Beach to head for the apartment get cleaned up, and return the bikes so we could check out.
Next was the reason I was actually down there, which was to provide sound for the Market America World Conference at American Airlines Arena. We headed over to my hotel there, and met up with my crew for dinner. Tuesday morning dawned and it was off to work, we rolled into the arena at 7:30AM to see this.
In the meantime Kathleen enjoyed another day in the sun before heading home to Baltimore on Wednesday morning. By the end of Wednesday night the arena had been transformed to this.

The show went really well, we loaded out Saturday night, then got blitzed by the hotel pool with the guys from Quince Imaging, before flying back to Baltimore today.