Monday, September 13, 2010

Report from Neskowin

My butt hurts. Today is Wavy's birthday and he is happy as a clam. He got to surf with his buddy Ollie out in the Oregon oceans. The surf was fun. He got two rights and a left but then he had to put his soggy bike shorts back on to ride to camp for an amazing halibut (from Alaska, line caught, of course) and quinoa feast. Have we said anything about the food? We still have a cooler full of cheese. Sarah, soon to be proud proprietor of Mission Cheese, has made sure we have more than enough. This year we have made significant efforts to source our food more sustainably. We bought a lot of bulk foods from Rainbow Grocery (a worker-owned co-op) and Amelia, a veteran rider this year, hooked us up with some great fruits, veggies, and meats from the farmers and ranchers at the Agricultural Institute of Marin. The peaches. Oooh, those peaches. Not to mention the one-a-day avocado allotment. We also received some wonderful donations including Melon's Catering, who donated some delicious tri-tip, Clif Bar, who donated a bunch of bars and shots to fuel us on the road, and 3Degrees who donated 5 tons of offsets for our support van. Since our van, who we have donned Nancy Bandango, only gets around 10-12 miles per hour, the offsets were a welcome donation and eased some concerns among the group about our carbon footprint.

Highlights so far: Getting 'busted' by the cops on the University of Oregon campus who thought our water jug was a keg when we stopped for lunch. The coast views yesterday - so vast that we could see the curvature of the earth. Joining forces with AT, Lily, and Jules for at least a day. The food. A dip in the Ocean. The people we have met along the way. Just hanging out and talking with each other. Seeing liquid manure spray out of a huge sprinkler on a farm and discussing whether it was a good thing (we felt we needed to learn more about the source and how much runoff it would cause) but this was offset by the veal cages at the farm across the street. The two birthdays and anniversary we have or will have on this trip. Did we say how much we love the food?

Things we miss: Alex Hooker's calves. AT, Lily, and Jules not joining us the whole week. Dorman's owl call. Toby, we really miss Toby. Shot bloks and Blueberry Crisp Clif Bars (although we love the Mojos and Clif Shots that Clif Bar gave us this year). The Hooker Brothers' stories - especially the one about Gay Hooker and the Lizard People (Gay Hooker is actually their aunt's name, no, seriously). A video camera. Sustainable Jeff, Hanna, Jervey, Mary, Pete, and Nick (calling out 'Morons!!!').

We are only done with day two but it's been two perfect days with great weather. As I write this, we are sitting by a campfire, I am uploading this post from my phone tethered to my computer - thanks technology, and Alex is strumming his guitar. We have encountered a few people along the road who ask us why we are riding and what Ride350 is. They all seem receptive to what we have to say. Will they change their ways? Most have biked this coast at one time or another but do they bike to work? Hmmm, probably not. We are all just happy to be back in the saddle together and we know that not only is it important to interact with the people we meet, the ride also rejuvenates the group internally. Ride on.

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