“A man on foot, on horseback or on a bicycle will see more, feel more, enjoy more in one mile than the motorized tourists can in a hundred miles.” ~ Edward Abbey
Canada is celebrating 150 years since confederation this year. There were lots of celebrations throughout the country on July 1st, 2017. The City of Barrie put on an excellent fireworks display to celebrate and Ralf got some great shots, with his new lens.
I was working until 5:00 p.m. on Canada Day and surprisingly we were very busy in the greenhouse. After work Ralf, and I headed down town to have dinner and watch the fireworks. All of the pubs and restaurants were really busy. We headed a little outside of the downtown core and had a nice meal in the Bull and Barrel Pub. We headed back to the downtown which was cordoned of for pedestrians. It was really busy, even though the weather was a little chilly. I am glad that we both wore windbreakers. We found a spot on the lakeshore and erected our little Helinox chairs and made ourselves comfortable. I wish we had bought a blanket as the wind was cool coming off the lake.
The fireworks started more or less on-time at 10:00 and were very good.
On July 2, 2017 we hosted our first cyclist, cycling across the country. Brecht was from Brugges, Belgium and has cycled from his home in Belgium through Turkey to Iran and then onto India, the Pamir Highway (in October). He was in South-East Asia in March and April, then flew to Canada before heading home from Newfoundland in August. He was a really nice guy. We always enjoy talking to cyclists who have toured in different places. Although, I still do not fancy going to India or cycling the Pamir Highway.
I think he had to sleep diagonally across the sofa bed, he was very tall – well over 6 feet.
Although we did not get out as often as we would like in June, on our road bikes, my new hours in July helped me get the spare room organized and motivated to get out on the bikes more often.
The end of the first week of July and I was able to ride every day to work, the weather changed for the better. Although once again Ontario’s weather swings from cool to hot overnight. Temperature highs of 27 degrees with the humidity making it feel like 35 degrees. I sort of cheated on my rides home. Instead of cycling up the steep (8% grade) at the end of my work day, I headed up the longer but less steep climb of Highway 27. Highway 27 has a wide shoulder although the traffic is busier and faster. I had to cycle an extra 2 kms home but not such a steep climb.
Once again the weather changes and we have had a wet week. This is a miserable summer.
Ralf has created a ‘neighbourhood ride” it is 25 kms and does not take us down any hill. We cycle around the subdivisions in the neighbourhood. I am amazed that he could find the route for a second time, when we cycled the route together. It was a fun ride, checking out houses in the neighbourhood.
Ralf is able to go for a ride most days, and has found a few different routes for us to ride. On Monday July 10, 2017 I asked for a flat ride, I am not sure Ralf knows what flat is any more. We had an elevation gain of 308 metres that is over 1,000 feet of climbing! over 50 kms. Nice route, but definitely not flat.
Eventually Ralf gets bored of staying at home. Sadly for me, because I love coming home from work and having dinner on the table within minutes of arriving home. Of course I knew it would happen, however, I didn’t think he would make a career choice. OMG my hubby is going to be a school bus driver! He started his training on July 21 and took his provisional test on Thursday July 27. Of course he passed, he has a few more hours in the bus to get his permanent license but will start driving the poor unprepared children on September 5, 2017. I was wondering whether I should put an advertisement in the paper warning the little darlings that my ex-military, German husband will be driving their school route!!
I am reading another Anne Mustoe book. Anne Mustoe inspired me to plan and ride around the world. This book is called Amber, Furs and Cockleshells. It is based on three different routes she took. However, she sums up why I want to cycle on long distance tours:
“Cyclists know better. They know that it is the people along the way who make the ride; and they know that there is not transport so useful as the modest classless bicycle for making the introduction”.