Vive memor quam sis aevi brevis.

Wednesday, 1 May 2019

Happy May Day all ye workers!


The people's flag is deepest red
It shrouded oft our martyred dead
And ere their limbs grew stiff and cold
Their hearts' blood dyed to every fold
 
Then raise the scarlet standard high
Beneath its folds we'll live and die
Though cowards flinch and traitors sneer
We'll keep the red flag flying here
 
It waved above our infant might
When all ahead seemed dark as night
It witnessed many a deed and vow
We must not change its colour now
 
Then raise the scarlet standard high
Beneath its folds we'll live and die
Though cowards flinch and traitors sneer
We'll keep the red flag flying here
 
It well recalls the triumphs past
It gives the hope of peace at last
The banner bright, the symbol plain
Of human right and human gain
 
Then raise the scarlet standard high
Beneath its folds we'll live and die
Though cowards flinch and traitors sneer
We'll keep the red flag flying here
 
It suits today the meek and base
Whose minds are fixed on pelf and place
To cringe beneath the rich man's frown
And haul that sacred emblem down
 
Then raise the scarlet standard high
Beneath its folds we'll live and die
Though cowards flinch and traitors sneer
We'll keep the red flag flying here
 
With heads uncovered swear we all
To bare it onward till we fall
Come dungeons dark or gallows grim
This song shall be our parting hymn
 
Then raise the scarlet standard high
Beneath its folds we'll live and die
Though cowards flinch and traitors sneer
We'll keep the red flag flying here
 
Words: Jim Connell Music: "The White Cockade"

Saturday, 27 April 2019

And this is why there's a pre-ride...

In a few days Great Lakes Randonneurs will run the Barrington Boomerang 200Km brevet.

The ride leaves from downtown Barrington and winds through the towns of Crystal Lake, Woodstock, Hebron, Walworth, and turns back at Darien, WI. It's a simple out-and-back course that's flat-to-rolling. i'm feeling a bit like a mother hen largely because most of the route follows one of my favourite rides, and i had a hand in laying it out for the brevet.


Rawson Bridge Rd.



Buddhist Temple, Woodstock, IL

Christian Science church, across  the street from the Buddhist temple.


Pride of Hebron! They've repainted it since this picture- it looks shiny and nice now.

The Great Corn Desert, past Hebron. Presently the fields are bare.

The route beyond Walworth was unfamiliar to me. We laid it out on the google maps and on Ride with GPS last fall, picking out what looked like the best and safest route to Darien.

i've been a bit under the weather lately and so far have been unable to ride a full 200Km, so last Thursday, i took a drive along the route to survey the roads and check the accuracy of the cue sheet.

All looked good and went well as far as Walworth, where i stopped for lunch at one of my favourite roadside eateries:



After lunch, i headed back out. Again, all was well until at kilometer 99 i encountered this:

Whoa! Mandatory dismount!
And this:

But on the other side...

...it didn't say nothin'...

...in either direction. Mind the guardrails!

A closer look at the satellite images on the google does show the barricades. We missed it. i don't know when this road was closed, but judging from the broken rails and broken beer bottles on the pavement, i'd say it's been a local party hangout for a few years now.

The railway it spans is the same one that has another closed bridge along another GLR route. My guess is that Walworth County and the railroad are in a spitting contest over bridge repairs. If i lived along either of those roads, i'd be very unhappy about the situation!

Not sure we'll keep this road on the route. The rando spirit in me says cross it anyway- just carefully walk the bikes across. i don't think there's any risk that the local residents will care, and besides, forgiveness is easier to get than permission.

                                                           ***************

Last Thursday was sunny most of the day and it was near 70F. It would've been a nearly perfect day to ride if i were able to do so. Today, a clubmate who'll be working with me on the brevet intended a solo pre-ride. i hope she left early and got back before things looked like this:

Oh yeah, Spring in the Midwest!

As of yet, it's still coming down!

Well, god put it there, and god can take it away. i've put the snow shovel away for the season.

                                                           ************************
And Postscript, This just in: Today's pre-ride came off safely with our plucky rider wisely abandoning inbound at Km.160 in Woodstock and taking the train back in.
 Chapeau!

                                                                                                          -VSR.



Wednesday, 10 April 2019

3 Speed Days

Monday and Tuesday were 3 speed days....




'67 Robin Hood, '71 Raleigh Sports. We keep 'em rollin'.

A leisurely commute, a slow roll through the neighbourhood, errand or two knocked out...

And a shakedown ride in preparation for next month's Lake Pepin 3 Speed Tour.

 It's all good.

                                                             *****************

                                                                                                                                         -VSR.


Monday, 25 March 2019

Wonder if it's thawed out yet...

Another casualty of winter...

Early last month, Omaha, NE.





                                                      (Meant to post this earlier, but forgot.)
                                                          *************************

                                                                                                                     Trying to get warm again,

                                                                                                                                      -VSR.