Two Wheels - Six Strings

Random news and thoughts about various two-wheeled projects and music, especially my band, Skull Full Of Blues.

Saturday, August 08, 2009

Night Rider

Most times, I like living alone. There is something to be said for not having to plan around someone else's schedule, and not worrying if what you are doing is going to bother someone else.

Other times, and they are rare, I really crave some company. There are odd nights when I don't really need anything to be going on, I'd just like to look across the room and see someone else.

I've had a few of those nights, this week. Sleep has been elusive, and I've been wound tighter than a three-dollar watch. I crashed out at 7:00 pm on Wednesday and slept until 7:30 am on Thursday, but I hardly felt rested after all of the strange dreams and tossing and turning in which I engaged.

Tonight, after dinner, I decided I couldn't sit around the house, any longer. So, I busted out the orange Peugeot, strapped on some lights, and headed out for a ride. On the way out the door, I called up Mark to see if he felt like joining me.

Mark was up for it, so we decided to meet at the Handlebar and Grill, which is about halfway between us. I got there about ten minutes ahead of mark, and went into the bar area to get us some seats. The Peugeot feels so fast, after riding around on the big fat 29er tires, so much. I don't know how fast I was going (no cyclometer on the OP), but I was keeping up about a 100 to 110 rpm cadence with the 65 inch gear.

This cool little KHS singlespeed mountain bike was being locked up as I rolled into the parking lot. I thought it was a fixed gear, at first, but it had a converted cassette hub on the rear.

Mark arrived soon after I claimed the seats of a departing couple, and we sat for awhile, and had a beer. After that, I was really wanting some coffee, so we headed for Pablo's on Sixth. Unfortunately, we got there after 11:00 pm, and the shop was closed.

No problem. St. Mark's Coffeehouse is open until 12:00 am.

On the way, we passed this odd outsider art, in the garden area of one of the local homes. I'm not sure what or who it's meant to represent, but it's kinda cool. Mark says that he always gets a kick out of seeing it, so I had him pose in front of it.

We cut through Cheeseman Park, and I had to stop to get this shot of the reflecting pool. The scent of flowers filled the night air, and the waning, almost full moon was bright enough that I got a pretty decent shot (on the third try).

The patio tables were completely overrun, at St. Mark's, so we sat inside. I had a big cup of black coffee and a raspberry/walnut scone. I had not been to St. Mark's since they moved out of their old space down on Market Street. What's that been, 8 or 9 years, now? Time flies...
At 12:00, the barista lowered the overhead steel shutters over the window, signalling that, even though we didn't have to go home, we couldn't stay there. So, we vamoosed.
Mark rode down to Downing and Speer with me, and we sat on the side of the street talking for a while. Eventually, he headed back toward his house, and I continued south.
As I rode, I decided to cut through Washington Park. I generally don't like to ride through the park, because it is too popular with a certain type of bike rider, and the pedestrian crowd seems completely unaware of the fact that bikes are even present, at times. But, I figured it would probably be pretty much my park, at 1:20 in the morning.

I was right, and I actually enjoyed the quiet solitude of the park. I stopped and sat on one of the benches beside the pond, and just enjoyed the cool night air, for a bit.

The moon and Venus kept me company, as the Peugeot patiently waited for me to continue on.
Eventually, I did just that, and headed out of the park and down Franklin Street, across I-25. I am always amazed at the volume of traffic on the Interstate, even at 1:30 am. I stopped and watched it for a moment as I crossed the overpass, then continued on.

I stopped at the observatory at Observatory Park, and got a shot of the Peugeot, just for the heck of it. I was within a mile of the house, and in no particular hurry to get home. But, I needed to go on to the house, and let the dogs in for the night. I don't know that they really understood it when I told them I just needed to pedal for a bit, before I left.
So, I got back to the house, let the dogs in, and decided to upload my pictures, so that I could blog about the ride later, today. Once I was at the computer, I thought I might as well get it all done, at once.
And, there it is...another exciting Friday night gone by. Now, it's 2:30 am, and I guess I should try to get some sleep before the sun comes up.
In the immortal words of Nelson Muntz, "Smell ya later.".


At 9:10 AM , Anonymous Big Dave said...

I was just thinking that I miss the night rides we used to have out of Destinations.

At 11:51 AM , Blogger katina said...

We went for a night ride last night...of course it wasn't very well in we left at sundown and then came back because it was dark and neither of us had lights on the bikes.

At 8:19 PM , Blogger Apertome said...

Sounds like a fun nighttime ramble. I enjoy riding at night sometimes, although I tend to forget that I enjoy it, and thus not do it very often. Reading this makes me think I'm about due for a night ride.


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