Posts Tagged ‘ outdoors ’
Today, I was sitting in Oblique coffee, sipping a delicious glass of toddy when I decided it’d be a good idea to browse this week’s Portland Mercury.
Usually I avoid this publication on principle, because I’m not really fond of ads for strip clubs and adult stores. But this week their headlining story was something pertaining to Wednesday’s blog– how to get into biking in Portland.
After I finished reading the tips (“Don’t be an asshole” was my favorite,) I continued flipping pages, because the article had mentioned something that sounded exciting that I had never before heard of.
The first thing I ever heard about Pedalpalooza was last year when the World Naked Bike Ride cruised right by my sister’s house. Unfortunately for me, I’m now living in that house. I shall probably bear witness to this event, while mournfully waving goodbye to any last shreds of innocence that clung to me.
It’s not just naked bike rides though. All this month, all over Portland, are organized bike rides centered around almost anything you can imagine.
The ones I’m going to make a valiant effort to at least witness, if not participate in, are as follows.
Thursday, June 14th. The Fake Mustache Ride.
Friday, June 15th. Bob’s Meme Ride.
Saturday, June 16th. The Star Wars vs. Star Trek Ride. I’m a Trekkie for life, by the way. We can argue about this later.
Sunday, June 17th. Zombie Apocalypse Ride. The instructions say to come as a zombie or a survivor. I just really want to witness this one.
Wednesday, June 27th. Crappy Gift Exchange Ride.
Also Wednesday, June 27th. OMSI Pedals Science Ride, which starts and ends at OMSI and includes science and OMSI after dark. What’s NOT to love?
There are also, throughout the month, a nice range of food cart tours, coffee shop meetups, naked bike rides aside from the big one, pet-inclusive rides, and rides specifically crafted for families.
Mostly I’m just shocked I’ve never heard about this before. All my life I’ve had family in the Portland area– heck, my dad grew up here and my brother lived here for like six years. Either they never mentioned it due to a lack of interest, or I just wasn’t paying attention when they did. (To be fair, it was probably the latter. I’m horrible at paying attention.)
Portlanders! Are you going to any of these rides? Are you going to any others that I should try to make it to? Email me or let me know in the comments. Let’s be biking buddies.
Ack! This post is a day behind schedule!
At least I have a very proper excuse. I spent the weekend at home in Redmond, Oregon, and yesterday I was at my sister’s house without a computer. I hereby absolve myself.
The weekend was highly enjoyable. On Saturday I went to Smith Rock— a highly well-known climbing and hiking destination only fifteen minutes from my parents’ home. My family, our friend Hadley, and I hiked up Misery Ridge and down the back by Monkey Face.
Misery Ridge is a serious misnomer. This is Hadley and I at the top.
And after we hiked to what was technically the top of the trail, Rachel, Hadley, and I scrambled up all the rocks to the very tip top of the accessible rock (since any higher peaks were only accessible with aid of ropes, belay devices, and other miscellaneous outdoor climbing gear.)
Then scrambling down the back, I found a rock upon which to strike a very strong and heroic pose.
I’m not going to lie to you; as much as I love the rugged desert beauty of Central Oregon, and as much as I always will, it’s nice to be back in the damp, chilly, crappy-weather Portland, where spring is already nigh.
Yesterday I was scheduled to open the coffee shop, which means I have to get to work at 6:45. In the world of coffee that’s pretty freakin’ plush, but since I’m the opposite of a morning person I still am uncomfortable awakening early enough to accomplish this, especially when I’m greeted by the sight of a paltry snowfall– only half an inch, and a slushy half inch at that.
Lake Oswegians are crappy enough drivers on a normal day, and let’s be honest; valley drivers can’t deal with snow anyway.
So I leaped at my roommate’s generous offer of dropping me off at work. It was a quick decision, a brief weighing of two things that suck– walking home in the rain, or possibly getting hit by a crazy rich person whilst riding my wee scooter in the snow/slush in the daylight-savings induced darkness?
I decided to walk home in the rain.
The ride over was positively luxurious– they say you never know what you have ’til it’s gone, and boy were They right. Work was characteristically uneventful, and so when it was still snow/rain/hail/whatever-ing at noon when I got off, I thought little of it.
“Whatever, rain,” I thought to myself, “I’m from Oregon! I can deal with this!”
The first few blocks were just dandy. My scarf and dual hoods kept my neck warm, and the wind beat against my back. I thought that was grand until I remembered that the final half mile to my destination was facing into the wind. I internally grimaced.
As I continued walking, both my route and the wind shifted so that the rain-slush was driving into my face. My raingear was failing me, and I became wetter and wetter. My glasses, covered in raindrops, were useless, actually obscuring my vision. I pushed them up onto my head. My bangs were drenched, clinging to my forehead uncomfortably. I thought, “Well, I might as well go for it.”
I partially unzipped my jacket and dropped the hoods to my jacket and sweater, freeing my hair from its damp, insufficient protection.
Just as I approached the final road to get up the hill to my house, I realized something stunning– although I was wearing low-top converse, my feet felt quite dry. I had no water sloshing around my feet.
“Hah!” I shouted at the sky, “I showed you!”
Then, my blindness and pride cut me down.
Too late, I watched as my foot descended into a puddle– a puddle that was too deep for the paltry rubber sides of my favorite, hand-dyed shoes to protect me from.
The inside of my left shoe was flooded. I shouted some choice words, inconsiderate of the construction workers up the street who could probably hear me. They looked askance at me as I trudged past, probably appearing somewhat akin to a drowned rat.
I left a puddle in the entryway from where I stood to take off my jacket and shoes. My soaked clothing went straight to the dryer. My feet bore the signs of bleeding dye, a consequence of being discontent with orange converse.
Next time, I’m braving the Lake Oswego drivers.
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