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Metro Boston: Good ride today?

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Metro Boston: Good ride today?

Old 10-07-19, 05:00 AM
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Originally Posted by Jim from Boston
...I really enjoy showing visitors around Boston on informal walking tours [or by bike], and I would offer that to a fellow BF subscriber, but I'm a pretty busy person, and would need a heads up to see if I'm available at a mutually agreeable time...

All my visitors have a great time here. Not to brag, but e.g.
Originally Posted by rtool
Spent a great weekend with Jim (Jimfromboston).
Originally Posted by miss kenton
... Our trip to Boston was more fun than I could have ever anticipated.
Originally Posted by irwin7638
...Jim was an exceptionally gracious host...
Originally Posted by Maelochs
Well, all the ones which made it out alive ...
Originally Posted by miss kenton
There is something very special and unique about meeting the people behind the posts on the forums. They are not fictionalized personalities, anymore than are the people you meet at work, or church, or through other friends.

I would suggest that the majority here are simply people with common bonds--their age and a love of cycling. Some also share an interest in travel, new experiences, and a desire to meet and enjoy the company of like-minded people.

IMO if you don't at least see the value of that opportunity, you are missing out on an amazing element of this forum.
I have a routine walking tour of Boston, especially for first time visitors:
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston
I often tout Boston as the epitome of LCF/LCL [Living Car Free / Living Car Lite] in America, not to brag, but illustrate the possibilities. When I take visitors on a 4-5 mile walking tour of downtown Boston, I introduce it with this explanation:

Several years ago, the architectural critic of the Boston Globe, Robert Campbell, was visiting Southfield, Michigan, a town I know well, and described it as the “City of Towers and Cars” (including “busy highways and vast parking lots" [and tall office buildings, and sprawling office and retail parks]).

In his article, he contrasted that that to the “City of Outdoor Rooms” (Boston) which is visited as one would visit a person’s home, passing through the various portals, from room to room, admiring the furnishings within.

That’s the motif I use on my tours as we start in the Back Bay, and pass through the Public Garden, Boston Common, Washington St and Quincy Market, the North End, Beacon Hill and back to Back Bay. The walk becomes the destination.
This Saturday I had the pleasure of taking a first time visitor on a cycling tour of the Olde Towne. In decades here, I had done a much shorter limited ride only once before with a visitor, but then that evening, after the organized ride out in the country we did that day, we did go for a sight-seeing walk and out to dinner that night.

So to record and reminisce about that day, and if anyone else has the opportunity to cycle tour the City:

My visitor and I hit it off immediately as soon as I found him at Long Wharf, at about 9:15 AM. He was nicely attired in cycling clothes, and I knew he would be a strong rider, and indeed throughout the visit we shared many cycling stories. He had written me that it didn’t mind him riding in traffic. He had also made comment noting Boston's Irish heritage.

So we went down Summer Street to D Street and into South Boston down Broadway up to Day Boulevard by the Farragut statue. I realized you could never identify that as an Irish neighborhood, it’s so gentrified. I admitted that we were really off the tourist track, but it was a sample of a more “real” Boston neighborhood.

We then went back to downtown and I pointed out the Seaport District and the face of 21st-century Boston as commented in the description of my walking tour of Boston, that area is the “City of Towers and Cars.”

We meandered downtown for the usual sites, Boston Common, and Washington Street for the historic buildings there, where to his delight, we encountered a boisterous and noisy Chinese celebratory parade, complete with dragons.



Then back to the Rose Kennedy Greenway where there was a Food Truck Festival, and we had lunch. We then walked our bikes through Quincy market as “Ground Zero” for tourism in Boston. Faneuil Hall was barely visible through a nearly totally opaque blue shielding.

Then to the North End, Old North Church, and Copps Burying Ground with a nice view of Charlestown and the USS Constitution. I did explain from my limited knowledge of the history (mostly gained on trolley tours) about the American Revolution.

In the North End, the Italian heritage was quite evident in contrast to South Boston’s Irish roots.

We then passed the Holocaust monument, City Hall and Plaza and up Beacon Street past the Statehouse, where he was amused to watch a political demonstration. I said now we're going to pass from plebian to patrician Boston.
And this is good old Boston,
The home of the bean and the cod.
Where the Lowells talk only to Cabots,
And the Cabots talk only to God.
We then turned right on Joy Street. We rode Mount Vernon Street past Louisburg Square down Charles Street to the Public Garden. Before entering it, of course I showed him the Cheers Bar.

He enjoys flower gardening, so we did walk a good part of the Public Garden though the floral displays were more muted than in the summertime.

Then I explained the history and grid system of Back Bay and we rode segments of each of the lengthwise streets, Comm Ave, Marlborough, Boylston, etc. In particular he had inquired about the site of the Boston Marathon bombing, so we rode past the Public Library.

Then back on Comm Ave, for fun, I brought him to my bike shop at Mass Ave, Back Bay Bikes, where they expeditiously fixed a minor problem he was having. Then on to Kenmore Square pointing out our building, the Citgo sign, and Fenway Park.

We stopped at our condo for brief time, and then rode Mass Ave, stopping at Memorial Drive for the beautiful view of the Boston skyline, and up to Harvard Square and University.

Originally, not knowing what his cycling expectations were for the day, I had thought about riding up Mass Ave to the Minuteman Bike Path at least to Lexington. But it was already 4:30 PM. So we then went back to Kenmore Square via the Charles River bikepath on the Cambridge side, to pick up my wife, drive to a nice restaurant, and bring him to Hingham where he was staying. He had taken the ferry with his bike to Long wharf that morning.

It was a beautiful day with pleasant temperatures, a clear blue sky, and he took a lot of pictures. I rode first in our single file on the roads, and he would shout out when he wanted to stop for a photo. In Back Bay, I didn’t hear the shout, and after I had made a turn and he didn’t show up for a few minutes he called me. Fortunately I had explained the alphabetical order of the cross streets, so when he told me he was near Berkeley, I said then turn left on Clarendon.

Boston was bustling and festive that Saturday, and I’m sure left him with a pleasant image of the city. In contrast, an unguided subscriber who drove into Boston once posted:
Originally Posted by ChinookTx
Ok, so, I'm back from Boston. Good news is, I'm still alive. Man, driving downtown is for sadistic people!! Who designed these roads???? ;-)

Ashamed to say I let SWMBO and my daughter decide on the "attractions" (call it buying peace) so we spent a crazy amount of money on the tourist traps (Science Museum, Aquarium, Harvard, Shopping, etc).:

And parking.... ohhh parking... Now, I get it, they don't want you to drive your car. When we were all museum'd out, we brought the kids to Six Flags New England. Yipppeeeee...

I guess I'll have to go back and do what I want to do in that beautiful area, cause I definitely did not this time around.

If you read this far, and haven't figured it out yet, yes, this was a rant! :-/

Last edited by Jim from Boston; 10-07-19 at 05:59 AM. Reason: added photo
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Old 10-07-19, 07:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Jim from Boston
My visitor and I hit it off immediately as soon as I found him at Long Wharf, at about 9:15 AM. He was nicely attired in cycling clothes, and I knew he would be a strong rider, and indeed throughout the visit we shared many cycling stories. He had written me that it didn’t mind him riding in traffic. He had also made comment noting Boston's Irish heritage.

So we went down Summer Street to D Street and into South Boston down Broadway up to Day Boulevard by the Farragut statue. I realized you could never identify that as an Irish neighborhood, it’s so gentrified. I admitted that we were really off the tourist track, but it was a sample of a more “real” Boston neighborhood.
In the summer time you can still tell as you ride past one of our Irish Rivieras.

Originally Posted by mr_bill

....

Heading to Wm Day Blvd. Couldn't resist slowing down and taking the boardwalk. The fragrance of Sea and Ski wafted by from the sea breeze, I remembered I forgot something before I left. Oh well. Only shrimped, didn't lobster, mostly my knee caps and inside of the elbows.


Once upon a time (not too long ago actually) you could bike out to Castle Island and around Pleasure Bay. "No Bikes" signs bar the way now. Sigh. I wonder what we did? (So, no pictures out there.)

Heading back into town, Southie is definitely changing. No judgments, just a fact, it is changing. Left v right.


....

-mr. bill
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Old 10-07-19, 10:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Jim from Boston
This Saturday I had the pleasure of taking a first time visitor on a cycling tour of the Olde Towne.

My visitor and I hit it off immediately as soon as I found him at Long Wharf, at about 9:15 AM. …He had written me that it didn’t mind him riding in traffic. He had also made comment noting Boston's Irish heritage.

So we went down Summer Street to D Street and into South Boston down Broadway up to Day Boulevard by the Farragut statue. I realized you could never identify that as an Irish neighborhood, it’s so gentrified. I admitted that we were really off the tourist track, but it was a sample of a more “real” Boston neighborhood….


In the North End, the Italian heritage was quite evident in contrast to South Boston’s Irish roots.
Originally Posted by mr_bill
Heading to Wm Day Blvd. Couldn't resist slowing down and taking the boardwalk. The fragrance of Sea and Ski wafted by from the sea breeze, I remembered I forgot something before I left. Oh well. Only shrimped, didn't lobster, mostly my knee caps and inside of the elbows.

Once upon a time (not too long ago actually) you could bike out to Castle Island and around Pleasure Bay. "No Bikes" signs bar the way now. Sigh. I wonder what we did? (So, no pictures out there.)

Heading back into town, Southie is definitely changing. No judgments, just a fact, it is changing. Left v right.
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston
It was one of my most pleasant cycling days in 40 years of cycling, to ride with jppe, and to direct his wife in the van to various locations and ultimately the Atlantic Ocean [after his cross-country ride from Oregon]. …

We next rode to Bedford, and took the 11 mile Minuteman Bikepath to Arlington. We could ride two abreast, and I had a chance to hear all the details of his ride. As did many respondents to his threads, I already knew of the virtually day-by-day details, and I asked pretty specific questions about the activities…We then headed straight though downtown for Castle Island on Boston Harbor...

We waited for Jeri to arrive with Sushi, and jp told me the heartwarming story of how they acquired him (I think). So Jeri arrived with the handsome dog, and right away a group of three young ladies gathered around admiring, ignoring the guy in the superhero costume. I had to tell them that the dog had just come across the country from Oregon, and oh yeah...with the guy in the red suit on a bicycle.

I told jp, “Well this far, and no farther.”(a favorite line from an episode of Columbo), and we took the end-of-ride pictures.





We then had a celebratory dinner at a fine Boston seafood restaurant (Legal Seafood Harborside).
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston
I know how well you know the geography of Boston, @mr_bill, and I did note our destination of Castle Island.

The end-of-ride pictures were taken behind Fort Independnce on the Harbor side, and the picture of the dog with the girls near Sullivan's.

The night before I had asked a friend from South Boston where to eat al fresco, since I would have my bike with me, and added, "...but not Sullivan's...," not with any prejudice, but I wanted to take them to a real nice place.

While en route to Boston I recalled we would be near the Seaport District, and we went to Legal Seafood Harborside...
When my visitor and I arrived at the Farragut statue, I pointed out Castle Island and Fort Independence, and mentioned [MENTION=20395]jppe[/MENTION]’s destination. Turns out he too had read jp’s trip threads on the Fifty-Plus Forum, and we both acclaimed his cycling adventures and beautifully photographed threads.

However, Castle Island seemed far in the distance and knowing all the sights that lay ahead, we turned back towards Boston.
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Old 10-10-19, 03:21 PM
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Anyone know where I can get a carbon fork/steerer scanned for weaknesses? (Boston area.)
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Old 10-14-19, 06:04 PM
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Originally Posted by athrowawaynic
Anyone know where I can get a carbon fork/steerer scanned for weaknesses? (Boston area.)
Suggest you call Quad Cycles, in Arlington. If anyone offers this service, I expect they'll know who it is.

rod
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Old 10-14-19, 06:23 PM
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Off with the splints, on with a pair of leather gloves, and onto the Rawland Nordavinden for a rolling rehab ride. Had a jolly time, and a little judicious twisting of the barrel adjuster for the rear der cable cured the chain slip that had bothered me on the last few rides on this bike. Just rode up to Lexington Center and back even though all the moving parts were willing to do a good deal more. Felt like a good beginning.














A single pink cloud qualifies this as a sunset ride.


I will admit I took this ride with a heightened sense of risks taken, mine and other people's. Not worrisome, just there.


rod

Last edited by rholland1951; 10-20-19 at 01:19 PM. Reason: There are times when Google Photos is a great disappointment.
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Old 10-14-19, 06:57 PM
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Originally Posted by rholland1951
Suggest you call Quad Cycles, in Arlington. If anyone offers this service, I expect they'll know who it is.

rod
The other alternative is a friend in the Longwood Medical Area. jk.

-mr. bill

Last edited by mr_bill; 10-14-19 at 07:11 PM.
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Old 10-14-19, 07:10 PM
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So, brought out the Xootr MG on Saturday to head to Davis. (Last year I used the knee scooter.) Rode switch again, and the hills are flattening. Actually saw another nut on the way home.

Sunday decided to leave all wheels home and walk to Harvard Square and back.


Finally, the old shoes lace garages had holes in them, they needed new cleats and laces, and they were threatening to split at the toebox. They also served me well for several years. So, got a great deal on new clown shoes and cleats, neon red, red, yellow and black, so they match frankndale.

-mr. bill

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Old 10-15-19, 04:15 PM
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Originally Posted by rholland1951
Off with the splints, on with a pair of leather gloves, and onto the Rawland Nordavinden for a rolling rehab ride. Had a jolly time, and a little judicious twisting of the barrel adjuster for the rear der cable cured the chain slip that had bothered me on the last few rides on this bike. Just rode up to Lexington Center and back even though all the moving parts were willing to do a good deal more. Felt like a good beginning.














A single pink cloud qualifies this as a sunset ride.


I will admit I took this ride with a heightened sense of risks taken, mine and other people's. Not worrisome, just there.


rod
Glad to see you back on 2 wheels.
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Old 10-15-19, 04:20 PM
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I’ve been in a good groove lately, I’ve been racking up 26-32 miles a few mornings throughout the week and getting group rides in on Sundays. September I rode 1007 miles with a solitary 100 mile ride on a particular gorgeous Sunday. I ordered a Gore Windstopper pair of tights and a shortsleeve Jersey. They completely changed riding in the rain for the better. I still see a few solitary headlights followed closely by a cyclist in the mornings despite the numbers and frequency dwindling.

see you on the road!
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Old 10-15-19, 04:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Ghazmh
Glad to see you back on 2 wheels.
Thanks, it's a pleasure to be riding again.

I took the Rawland out again today, this time to Depot Park. What a pretty day for a ride! Nothing fell off.


What? A fourth space monster on the pole?


What is it?


The sign says STOP, the vine says GROW.




Bedford: look over people's back fences and you see the damnedest things. Cue the theremin.


The Shawsheen River, phelgmatic and gently glowing today, will be fully charged and looking for a little respect by Thursday. Angry River God, Peewee Division.




Glowing.


Three allegories seen, but not photographed, on the Minuteman:

o An old man pushing an old woman in a wheelchair, approaching inbound in the outbound lane; walking from their Past to my Future?

o A father who had plopped a smiling toddler in the basket of a Lime Bike near Trader Joe's, pedaling off to who knows where; a cheerful if perilous Future.

o A young man pedaling inbound, hands and eyes on his phone, but nonetheless holding his line; certainly the Present, but the Future is questionable.

rod

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Old 10-16-19, 06:19 AM
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This morning was delightfully cold. Upper 30’s I did however roll out with the my PI thermal skull cap when I clearly should have had my balaclava that tucks into the top of my jacket. A steady stream of cold air was getting right through to my chest tempering my zeal for the cool weather ride. In all I rode 26 miles on my Trek Boone 7 1x cross bike slower than I was before the added layers became necessary. Oh how I’m looking forward to gliding over the winter roads on my new semi custom Honey Allroads. Just waiting for it to be built up.
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Old 10-16-19, 09:05 PM
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Took the Trucker DeLuxe out to Depot Park on a gray and breezy afternoon before the big weather got here, temperatures falling through the 50s.




Arlington: official business on the Minuteman.


The breezes kept things lively.






Some serious tree work in Lexington.


Elm Brook, Bedford, looking pretty.


Someday, someone will repair or remove this curvilinear ruin of an old fence. When they do, I'll miss it.




rod

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Old 10-17-19, 07:53 AM
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Originally Posted by rholland1951
Some serious tree work in Lexington.


rod
Cool shot. They needed to do much more work than that. There are tons of downed branches and trees, and power outages in the area. The bikeway is probably nearly impassable.
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Old 10-17-19, 08:23 AM
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Originally Posted by autonomy
Cool shot. They needed to do much more work than that. There are tons of downed branches and trees, and power outages in the area. The bikeway is probably nearly impassable.
True. I reckon we'll have another round of Bikeway Cyclocross after the wind subsides.

rod
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Old 10-17-19, 02:39 PM
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Hope everyone is safe after last night's storm. What a wild one! I can't believe I didn't lose power. We lose it all the time.
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Old 10-19-19, 03:45 PM
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Out to Lexington Center and back on the Minuteman this afternoon. Aside from a few sawed logs by the side of the trail, there was little trace of the storm two days after the fact. Typical weekend throngs were thronging. The color palette of the remaining leaves was definitely different than pre-storm.






rod

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Old 10-20-19, 04:09 AM
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I braved the roadside debris Friday morning with my cross bike almost completely in the dark. Per usual I hooked a left onto Conant rd in Lincoln on the return leg of my routes. The road was closed but it was dark and I was on a bike so I went anyways. There was still an entire tree dangling sideways about 10’ above the road being held aloft by the wires it was tangled in. That would explain every house being pitch black save for those with generators humming away. By the time I rode up that road again Saturday afternoon, it was cleared.
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Old 10-20-19, 07:15 AM
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Originally Posted by Ghazmh
I braved the roadside debris Friday morning with my cross bike almost completely in the dark. Per usual I hooked a left onto Conant rd in Lincoln on the return leg of my routes. The road was closed but it was dark and I was on a bike so I went anyways. There was still an entire tree dangling sideways about 10’ above the road being held aloft by the wires it was tangled in. That would explain every house being pitch black save for those with generators humming away. By the time I rode up that road again Saturday afternoon, it was cleared.
Sounds eerie.

rod
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Old 10-20-19, 12:57 PM
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Yesterday, glorious day for the Head of the Charles, then off to SOWA and one of the galleries, then off grocery shopping and wine shopping (just a simple Chicken Marsala). 50K total of events and errands. Bike feels great, moved saddle ever so slightly. But unexpected side effect. Every unexpected noise first thought is what did I do wrong?

Anyhow, cameo at the bike rack, just intrigued by how un-Amsterdam artist’s bikes are:



-mr. bill
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Old 10-20-19, 06:30 PM
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Originally Posted by mr_bill
... Bike feels great, moved saddle ever so slightly. But unexpected side effect. Every unexpected noise first thought is what did I do wrong?

...
-mr. bill
I've encountered that sort of bicycle ventriloquism myself: bird-bug-squirrel sounds get referred to bottom bracket, seat, fenders. The acoustic location can be hilariously convincing.

rod

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Old 10-21-19, 07:12 PM
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It's the third week of October, and a quick ride before dinner means leaving at sunset and returning in full dark. Put some new batteries in the headlights on the Nordavinden, and rolled up to Lexington Center and back, temperatures falling through the 50s.






Saw a leaf that looked like a mouse, heard a very young soccer player who sounded like a mouse, neither saw nor heard a real mouse. Lots of Invisibles out tonight, my lights picked up the gray sneakers of one, looked like a bunny. Shortly thereafter, a real bunny broke cover, but did not look like sneakers.



rod
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Old 10-22-19, 08:20 AM
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From this morning.

Jim is a blur:



And the new Bus Lane in East Arlington:


-mr. bill

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Old 10-24-19, 03:43 PM
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Beautiful day today! For me, I tolerate the New England winters because I get to experience the New England fall. Got out for a short coffee ride to town today. Can't do longer rides during the week - pesky work. Saturday looks good too. I need to plan an adventure!
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Old 10-24-19, 04:06 PM
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Feeling mentally weary after hearing a friend's bad news, I took the Rawland Nordavinden for a leisurely spin out to Depot Park and back on a lovely Fall day, temperatures in the mid-60s. I kept an easy pace, and heard the bells of others ring about as often as I heard my own. The ride began with a late-season katydid sighting at the end of my driveway.


Autumn's transformations proceeded apace.






A leaf falls in Bedford.


The inbound ride was busier and breezier than the outbound ride.


Nature's own Halloween costume.


A swan's reverie on Peepers Pond.


rod

Last edited by rholland1951; 10-25-19 at 08:37 AM.
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