Saturday, March 10, 2007
We went out cycling around Bay Farm Island and Alameda today with our friend Ashley and her friend Will. All in all, we biked about nine miles, which is an amazing distance for Robb. We biked along the shoreline, and had a little picnic near the beach.
In this photo, we have just finished our ride, and Robb has his helmet off. Because Robb is so stable, and so low to the ground on the tandem, one might question the need for a helmet. But of course, we always wear them. We were on the roads for part of this ride. And while we were on a gravel path, Robb actually managed to have a little spill. We were on the only non-paved part of the shoreline trail. I was in the lead, and had pulled over because everyone was going to have to follow me through a tricky bit of trail. Ashley and Will almost dumped their bike over, and while I was walking back to the tricky section to help Robb along, he managed -- in amazing cinematic slow-motion -- to tip over the trike. It was the oddest, gentlest roll-over anyone could imagine, and I believe that Robb was laughing the entire time. We pulled the trike off of him, and got him back on his feet. I remember being so alarmed, when I first went back to work, about the thought of Robb falling over and not being able to right himself. I think that this little spill was actually an odd sort of achievement. (Or maybe I'm just a horrible sadist with weird double-jointed elbows....)
Will had just bought this astonishing tandem bike. Will's bike breaks apart into three big pieces, and fits into two custom made suitcases, which is just about the coolest thing imaginable. He and his wife plan to cycle El camino de Santiago, the path of Spanish Pilgrims, once they are married.
Will generously allowed me to ride with him for part of our trip. Once I got over my fears that I was going to contribute to crashing Will's brand new bike, I had a blast!
Do I need to mention that the bicycle built for two and the recumbent trike turned heads all along our ride? We joked that I should have been riding a unicycle, so that we could have had every possible configuration and number of wheels.
Robb had figured out a brilliant pedal modification, so that he was able to stay clipped onto the pedals. Last weekend, we strapped his feet to the pedals, but that required all sorts of pit-stops and adjustments. I'll try to remember to take photos of the new, and very clever, Robb-designed system.
Because we were hanging out with friends, I hardly took any bird photos at all, but I could not resist this fellow. This red tail hawk was hanging out on a lamp post next to the Alameda shoreline. When Robb was first at home from the hospital, he would go walking on this particular beach with his therapist Doreen. I thought of this as California Therapy; you're not well until you can go for walks along the beach.
It was another beautiful day!