July 2007


Mowed the grass today. Only the ninth time this year, unless I’ve miscounted. It’s been a very dry summer so far. The grass is more brown than green.

Due to weather, travelling, health, work, and minor bike problems, today’s ride was the first since last Friday. But it was a milestone ride; today’s ride pushed me over 1,000 miles for the year. Woo-hoo! For comparison, last year I had 1068 miles for the entire year.

Craig Stadler, BC Open, July 2003

Today’s ride took me past the En-Joie Golf Course, which is hosting the inaugural Dick’s Sporting Goods Open this week. This tournament is on the PGA’s Champions Tour. From 1971-2005, the course hosted the PGA Tour’s B.C. Open. The picture to the right is of Craig Stadler at the B.C. Open in 2003; he won the tournament that year. Stadler was Thing Two’s favorite golfer that year because she got a kick out of his nickname—The Walrus.

Back to today’s ride: 25.3 miles out to the Town of Owego’s boat launch on Marshland Road. I had a very strong headwind heading out to Owego; my return trip was about 5 minutes faster than the outward-bound leg. [View Route]

Baked a batch of Cherry Triple Chocolate Chunk Brownies today to take to work. I’m not adding the recipe to my recipe pages because this was just Hersheys Triple Chocolate Chunk Brownie mix that to which I added some bing cherries; nothing special.

Thing Two and Niece J Running in the 2001 Kids Boilermaker

This past Sunday marked the 30th running of the Utica Boilermaker in my former hometown. Before knee troubles lead me to bicycling, I was a runner and had run in the Boilermaker a number of times. The picture to the right is of Thing Two and my Niece J running the Boilermaker Youth Run in 2001. Thing One and Thing Two ran in the Youth Runs several times.

The Boilermaker can be fun if you can put up with the crowds—there were over 10,000 finishers this year. There is a huge post-race party with food, bands, fireworks, and beer. But between the crowds, hilly course, and typically warm and muggy weather, it is not a great race to try to set PRs.

My Nephew J and Niece J ran the race this year. Nephew J posted a good, sub-70:00 time. Niece J finished just over 66:00 (a PR for her I think) and was in the top 100 females (based on gun time). Congratulations to both of you on your runs!

Thing One At Camp

Also on Sunday, H and I drove Thing Two to camp. After unloading all of her stuff, we said our goodbyes and then spent a few minutes with Thing One. Thing One is having a great time and has so far avoided getting Counsellor-in-Training duty in the Bunk House with all the little kids. The picture above is from a bunch of pictures we downloaded from Thing One’s camera while we were there.

That leaves H and I kid-less for two weeks. H will be keeping me busy with some minor kitchen and dining room remodelling. Nothing major—new stove and fridge, new dining room table and chairs, and some painting. The new appliances and furniture arrived yesterday. The painting will start this weekend or next week when I am on vacation.

Mowed the lawn for the eighth time this year on last Saturday. It has been very dry here; that was the first time in just over three weeks!

Since my bike tire is in the shop (broken spoke, see yesterday’s post), I decided to do some baking. I made some muffins, half with strawberries and the other half with chocolate chips, and also made a sour cream coffee cake.

We take Thing Two to camp tomorrow and we hope we get to see Thing One while we are there. (She’s a Counsellor-in-Training there, remember?) I suppose it would be nice if I were to bring some of the baked goodies to her.

Babcock Bicycles called in the late afternoon to let me know my tire had been repaired. No charge! Thanks Kevin! They took down some pertinent information (model, serial number, etc) and are going to contact Raleigh to see if they can get any money back from the manufacturer.

Independence Day was a wash. I got up early instead of sleeping in, in hopes of beating the predicted afternoon and evening rains. But the weather radar was showing that rain was already approaching and I did not get a ride in. Thursday’s weather was also wet.

Having missed two days in a row (and missing a ride on Monday due to too much work), I was anxious to get out today. There were some small blips of rain on the radar, but by the time I finished working in the late afternoon, there looked to be a big enough gap on the radar to try to squeeze in a short ride. I tried the Old Vestal Road route again, even though I knew I’d be facing heavy traffic on a Friday afternoon. I managed to avoid all the people turning out from side roads and turning right in front of me without turn signals and had a good ride until about a mile from the end when another spoke on my rear tire popped. Oh well, at least it happened closer to home this time. [View route]

But it looks like a long Saturday ride is off my agenda.

A couple of days ago, we heard from Thing One at camp. First, we got a letter from her in the mail. Sounds like everything is going good. Later, we got an unexpected phone call. One of the perks for a CIT (Counsellor-in-Training) is a weekly call home. We did not know that. It was very nice hearing from Thing One. Sounds like she has been having a lot of fun and has found out that she loves sailing.

We also got her final grades in the mail. 4Q average was 96.0; overall average for the year was 94.5. She was really worried about her Global final; she thought that she may have even failed it. It turns out that she was worried over nothing. Her final there was a 93. Super job!

July so far is 3-for-3 on beautiful days, but I have only one ride to show for it. Sunday I was too tired after travelling to Niece G’s High School Graduation party. Yesterday I was working until after 10 PM. But today I did get out for a ride out to Marshland Road. I felt very strong; I was able to push the pace a little more than usual. Back in the days when I used to run, I always felt strong a couple days after a hill workout. Maybe hills have the same effect on my riding as I had a tough hill ride on Saturday. Today’s ride was 23.5 miles. [View route]

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