Bike vacation adventures


Growing up I had a bike and I loved it.  I have never been a great cyclist.  I gave it up when I moved in with my fiance in 1990.  For some reason he found no reason for me to have a bike, and since our studio was small I agreed to get rid of my bike.  Later after we bought a house, I wanted a bike again.  He absolutely would not let me have one.  I was bitter about it, but I lived with it.  The problem I missed in this scenario is that he was abusive and controlling.

Not having my bike probably contributed to my eventual weight gain.  No excuses, but I think it attributed to a depressed state.  I worked nights for years and we had different schedules.  I look back on this now and wonder why I allowed this man to control things like this in my life.  This is just one instance of his control, there are many more.  I am not going to share those in this blog, because this blog is about biking.

My current partner bought a bike so he could bike with me.  We have taken one trip two years ago by Amtrak to Portland for a weekend of bike love.   This weekend was his birthday.  I decided to take him, or rather have him take me to Port Angeles.  He decided we should take our bikes.  He hates the bike rack we bought for his car so I was quite surprised that he wanted to strap the bikes on and take them with us.

We arrived Friday night and walked to the downtown area for a couple of drinks.  We found a brew pub and had a few samples of their flavors.  We then went around the corner to a place named Michael’s.  I ordered a 1st Street and Richard had a Vesper, think James Bond.  The 1st Street is House made Rosemary infused Hendricks Gin, balsamic reduction seasonal fruit muddled with basil and ice.  The fruit used for the one I had, was grapefruit, orange and lemon.  It was by far the best tasting cocktail I have ever had.

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Saturday we went for the most watered down bloody mary’s and mediocre food.  Then off to ride a bike trail up the peninsula to the Coast Guard station.  It was a great ride and I loved the view and the sea air.  After that we checked the time and headed for a winery.  We ended up riding all over the place and down Highway 101, which is not my idea of fun.  We never did find the winery.  We ended up at this GastroPub to watch the Sounders game.  We walked in and The Master’s was on the TV.  Richard was positive they would not be watching Sounders, but the Chef saw our jerseys and informed us the game was qued up for 4:30.  So we ordered a bite to eat and Richard had a beer, I had a Sangria.  We watched the game and then at halftime I ordered this great salad with Crab and almonds, feta, fennel and some citrus vinaigrette.

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After the game we headed back to the hotel and I was so tired I asked what he wanted to do.  I was willing to go back out, but frankly all the biking we did made me just want a hot bath and watch some movies.  We ended up grabbing some beer and bath salts at a local store and going out to this place called BushWhackers.  It seemed like a roadhouse until you got inside.  The food was decent and the staff friendly.  We ate then went back to the hotel and I took a long hot bath.  We then watched movies until we crashed, which for me was about 15 minutes.

It never occurred to me before to take my bike on trips.  Now I cannot imagine going anywhere without a bike or renting a bike.  From now on no matter what I will bike on vacations.  You cannot imagine the how much better you get to see a city perched upon the saddle of a bike.  I love it and I am so glad I have a partner to share this love with.

As a side note, Port Angeles is a great bike friendly town.  I had no idea this weekend was a mountain bike race.  I advise anyone that is interested in taking a bike on vacation to look up the city they intend to visit.  Find out if they have bike infrastructure.  Get ideas of where you would like to ride and then jump in the saddle and head out.

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