The dogs in the cart attached to the bike are waiting outside the St. Louis Park Trader Joe’s. Met the interesting Terry bike owner after admiring doggies. She may or may not send me details about her ride around Lake Superior so I have sketchy story about an 1100 mile ride and some time spent in Thunder Bay. So if I hear back from her I’ll make detailed post. But, why I write is to rave about better feed, food, grub, dinner, nutrition, and whatever since Trader Joe’s has become my go to store. Fergetabout my Costco rebates and Rainbow gas miles and the carpeted isles at Byerly’s. TJ’s is a grocery bag or less 3 or 4 times a week. I posted pictures of the contents from one such trip. Now with a full house for the past week, we have shopped exclusively for fruits, vegetables, cereals, dried fruit and nuts, chips and salsa, crackers and bruschetta, milk and eggs, Italian bread and red sauce. These staples are high quality, very tasty and a better price than sale items at these other stores. Banana’s 5 for a dollar! Like when you go into Joe’s you don’t get into a buying frenzy like Costco. Nor do you over consume because Joe’s packages are never “family” size. I still go to the chains in town once or so a week to buy our meats, always on sale, and ice cream, can’t live without. Let’s face it to keep the house well stocked and not break the bank we are shopping around 4 days a week as we did this week. Why buy more? It’s great to live in this city were at times much is taken for granted. Then we realize how fortunate to be wherever we are as we are already there.
Oh, about the dogs in front of Trader Joe’s and what was it? Yeah, you meet more people when on a bike and especially at Joe’s. Sometimes too, friendly dogs and a story. Did you know in Liberia in the Mandinga tribe that Donzo means Hunter? So don’t let the broken English persuade you that it means all done or finished. That bit of lore coming straight from Donzo the Liberian clerk at Joe’s
Yeah, baseball opener is coming, but how we all get to the game downtown now has a few options besides driving our pickups and Suvs. The NorthStar line from Big Lake to Target Field is scheduled for home games. The Hiawatha line is again cramming fans into trains. Mix up the night on the town and game with fellow fans to the park and ride. With the new season bicyclist will want to ride out to the Field using the 50 plus miles of trail system. There is a new stretch of trail opening soon that goes right into Target Field. From the West side at the terminus of the Cedar Lake super highway trail. (take a right and you end up at Lee’s Liquor Lounge) Go straight ahead toward Target Field. When I was on this section St. Patty’s Day the trail was open to the parking lot before Washington Ave. The trail will eventually connect with the River Road and is expected to open this Spring. From the River Road there will be signs pointing to Target Field.
With this new trail to the River the opportunity to bypass downtown all together has finally been created. It seems that now the population from North and Northeast can move freely towards Southwest Minneapolis and the inner ring suburbs of Edina and St Louis Park. And as more Southwester’s become familiar with the trail, access to the West Bank and the University has just become easier. From a recreational point of view, this link eliminates being relegated to the messy bike lanes that the city created on first avenue last year. So take some time and find new routes this year, get off the beaten path and discover the city again.
Crusty and dirty but very functional transportation. This rider was one of hundreds that turned out for the 2011 City of Lakes Loppet events last weekend. The weather was above freezing then. Since Monday we have been -10 each morning after mid-night. Brrrr. This weather does not stop many outdoors people. Dogs get walked, runners get stretched and bicyclist roll right along. The momentum starts with dressing for the weather, mentally warming to the idea that you are getting outdoors and then pushing on through the door to the other side. Pretty complicated stuff when taking into account will power. If we had to wait for an above freezing temperature to go outdoors, that would have been a long wait. It was 5 weeks in a row below 32 degrees since December 30th. Yeah, plenty of indoor home gyms and gym rats keeping in shape but for the rest of us embracing the outdoors is more freeing and healthier.”One’s destination is never a place, but a new way of seeing things” –Henry Miller
Any successful venture is full of shades of gray. In business when a product is being delivered to a customer the customer doesn’t know or care what is behind the scenes, they just want their purchase. So it is with biking. The skill which it takes to ride on ice and snow is given little appreciation when what we see is an effortless balancing act.
Loppet 2011 in Minneapolis this weekend. Ice bike race on frozen lagoon in the City of Lakes Uptown. Big turn out with spectators’ riding in fair weather conditions. Check out flick for more bike photos. Sponsors say this winter event is the largest ski event in the country this year.
Before Super Bowl Sunday happens tomorrow the rest of the world has all eyes on the middle east. If you have paid attention to the clashes in the streets of Cairo there is a sort of gamesmen quality to it all. Alas,collateral casualties and self-immolations aside there reported very little escalating violence. Tho the stakes being played are with real people hurting in many ways and that of a government reluctant to put on more hurt. Is regime oppression redefining itself? How are the people working toward peace being redefined ? Reading in the NY Times today it struck me how political change taking place explains the peoples redefinition of themselves. Two observations: “the power in the street is a new social power” and the push for change is “strong enough to lead a street movement” Redefining a people is being repeated again. It happened when the Wall came down 2 decades ago. Street movements can happen anywhere and in any place. So bicyclist who feel you want more than sport after Sundays’ game there is life beyond the Stupor Bowl. Does your view of bicycle use define yourself? Can a street revolution in Cairo inspire you to redefine the bicycle? Are you strong enough to lead a street movement? Solidarity in the street is the new social power.
This is the Rollo that we share. All the low end bikes in our household are shared. What I mean by low end is the bike was free or falls somewhere in the realm of cheap and easy. Ask if you want to ride my road bike. What if we didn’t actually own bikes and all we had to do was swipe our credit card anytime we wanted to ride? Pretty convenient stuff in a perfect world. Would that world be better? Like a condo association for biking, no maintenance, repairs, just a fee for using. Like hour car for biking, take it and leave it anywhere as long as you use it, still just a fee. No matter, this would be a bargain for most Americans. First, let’s talk fees. Initially this won’t cost most people anything. By clearing out garage of dads vintage 70’s bikes that no one has ridden in 30 years there is immediate cash flow. Take off and enjoy for a season the space you created in the garage. Look for more stuff to sell, skate, Nordic Track, Canoe, cross country skis, bar bells, bowling ball, walking stick, you see the profits rolling in and another biking season ahead is paid for. Look at all the stuff you don’t need to own anymore. Pretty soon you can rent out the garage to some dude that’s even got less than you. Start your own community right now by using bike share.
I wanted to get some more New Orleans pictures on the site. It makes me warm seeing them again. Can’t wait to have some real warmth again in the South. I’ll be taking a break this month on the beach and away from the ice and snow. Until then I will be working on more local bicycle pictures as we are one less day of winter and I don’t want to miss anything.
The wild life is abundant in and around the Twin Cities. Saw this deer in Wayzata today. Few nights ago saw a fox in my neighborhood under the street lamps. When I am in my car or going places on foot, biking or running I appreciate my wild neighbors immensely. All it takes is a camera which I have been taking with me when I leave home. Whatever, if enjoying nature is not on your mind much then take a moment today…the i deer here is to, do some moving around outside, under your own power and do daily organic motion.
The cold does not stop us in the North from doing our routines outdoors. We are not brave or fanatics about the weather. It is a matter of living to put ourselves in motion. Rollo hanging out again.