Triumphant ride into Manahawkin..

Maybe one of the last Tour De France blogs for this year. Today was the final day the Map My Ride (an app for your phone) Tour De France Challenge.  The challenge, if you have been just clicking Like and not reading (just kidding), has been to ride your bike for at least 20 minutes each day the riders in the Tour De France ride their bikes.  I completed the challenge this morning at 8:55 am. That noise you heard was the cheering throngs lining Lime Guy Bouvard cheering me on to the finish. The reality was quite different (as it usually is). I did finish my nearly 25 mile ride this morning around 8:55 am, but there was nobody home except for my DW. The neighbors were hiding behind their air conditioning. A quiet morning in the neighborhood.

I finished the challenge having ridden 306 miles in 23 rides. Out of 24,956 participants, I am ranked number 2939!  Not bad to a 53-year-old man who could stand to lose a few pounds.  It was a lot of work. There were lots of mornings at 5:51 am when the alarm went off that I wanted to roll over. Now what? I will ride less frequently, but the health benefits should continue.  And, it has not rained here in Manahawkin in the morning since at least June 29 th!

Children, where are they today? Funny that you should ask. Let’s see, DS1 is in Philadelphia with a childhood friend after spending Saturday in NYC at a concert on Governor’s Island.  He is scheduled to come home after work tomorrow. DS2 is on the Outer Banks of North Carolina with his girlfriend and her family. They had a very long drive from the Jersey shore to Cape Hatteras yesterday. I’m glad I was not in the car. DS3 is on the train from New York’s Penn Station to Long Branch, NJ. He spent the day in NYC with his girlfriend. She lives out on Long Island, so the city is a good central place for them to meet.

My DW went to yoga this morning.  I took a short nap after riding while she went to class. Then we went grocery shopping. See, the Lime Guy life is not all glamour and Hollywood parties! I worked in the garden this afternoon harvesting a 5 gal bucket of tomatoes and cucumbers. Most of the tomatoes got ground up for sauce and frozen for the winter. I will probably be bringing cucumbers into work to give away this week.

The boardwalk in Seaside Heights is open! Really. We went there Friday night and there were not many people. Get out while you can, summer is going to pass you by!

Here are a few pictures with captions.  Enjoy, and thanks for reading..  Who needs PRISM? Just read the blog, dude!

Namaste

 

 

More bike riding nonsense..

This past Sunday at 5:45 am I found myself standing outside the local bagel store waiting (not patiently) for them to open the doors so I could get my breakfast and head north to Queens, NY for the 6 th Annual Tour De Queens.  The Tour De Queens was just like the Tour De Brooklyn that I rode in back in June. Except for the one ride being in Queens and the other in Brooklyn.  Let me say right here that is was hot!

 On the ride into Queens I got stuck for 15 minutes as they set up a  construction zone with barrels and cones on the BQE.  I hate the BQE.  I can’t say that I have ever had an easy ride on that road.  The ride started out in Astoria Park.  As we lined up for the ride we were looking up at the Tri Boro Bridge above and the East River to our right.  Parking? That was a joke. Near the park there were not enough spaces for the people that live there not to mention the 1250 cyclists that invaded their little corner of paradise that Sunday morning. Driveways and fire hydrants were the sentinels of the empty curb spaces. I did finally find a spot and get dressed and checked before the ride started.

The ride is (as described last month) a 20 mile parade of 1250 bike riders with full NYC police support. The police lead the parade and closed the intersections as the bikes were ready to cross the intersections.  I rode in the front 200 riders for most of the day. I would guess that once the intersections were closed they stayed closed for the better part of 15 minutes.  The total distance of the ride was 20 miles. On the Map My Ride course sheet, you can see the actual course that I rode on Sunday.

I had a few interesting moments on Sunday. I rubbed wheels (my front to their back wheel) twice. Neither time anyone crashed. I saw three people crash on their bikes. One guy bounced off a parked car, the other two lost control and fell to the pavement with less than a mile to go left in the ride. We rode past the entrance to Rikers Island (the NYC prison). We rode past an entrance to La Guardia International Airport.  We got “showered” by a fire hydrant with a shower cap installed. And I got a really nice shirt as a souvenir.

Pictures, yeah well, I took a few. Here are a few and here is a link to the Drop Box folder with the entire set.

Enjoy!

Namaste

 

Discover Hudson Valley 2013..

Sunday I rode my bike in the Discover Hudson Valley 2013 bike ride.  There were several distances that you could choose to ride. They were 15, 33, 50, 75 and 100 miles. I decided that the 33 mile ride would be in my distance ability. I read the brochure and was unsure of my ability to complete the course due to the total elevation change listed on the website for the 33 mile ride.  I finally decided Sunday morning to “just do it” and stop analyzing the ride before I ever got on the bike. I was up at 5 am and on the road by 5:45 am. The ride started in Poughkeepsie, NY which is 162 miles (uphill) from where I live on the Jersey Shore.

I was there and checked in on time to start the ride at 9 am when the 33 mile riders were supposed to depart. The big departure was more of a “go when you want” as opposed to everybody lining up and rolling at the same time. The ride festival and check in were held in a park alongside the Hudson River. Straight above the park site was the Walkway Over the Hudson. This is a pedestrian bridge that used to be a train bridge. Their website can be found here.  The views off the bridge were amazing.  We rode across the bridge and back as part of our 33 mile ride.

There were three rest areas spread out over the course of the ride. The number of hills seemed (and still seems) disproportionate to the downhills.  That is not physically possible since we started alongside the river and finished alongside the river.  There were many gently rolling hills to be conquered and a few steep downhills to be enjoyed.  I got back to the river in 3.5 hours and got my shirt (the real reason to ride, besides the story) and headed back to my van (about a mile away – yes, uphill). As I sat on the back bumper of my bike enjoying a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, it started to rain. I lucked out for sure. Of the 1600 plus riders, I would guess most of them were still out on the roads.

At the festival they had a smoothie tent set up where you (the rider/participant) could make a banana, strawberry and orange juice smoothie (no rum that I could see). The only catch was that the park did not have electricity. To run the blender you had to pedal the stationary bike to generate electricity to run the blender. I passed. 

I have an app on my phone called Map My Ride which tracks speed, elevation and other stuff during  a bike ride.  Here is a link to the Map My Ride from the Sunday ride.   I rode on Thursday (my birthday) the same distance, 35 miles. The birthday ride was down the shore and had a total elevation change of 291 feet for the 35 miles. Most of that was going over the Manahawkin Bay Bridge, twice. The Discover Hudson Valley 2013 ride had an elevation change of 1089 feet for the same 35 miles! 

I shot some pictures, more in the beginning and less towards the end.  Here is a link to all the pictures.  Below you will find a few pictures with captions.  Enjoy!

Namaste

Summer Solstice Yoga in Times Square ..

Or for you social media people out there #SolsticeTSq . Friday, June 21 was the summer solstice. As we all know the summer solstice is the day that we have the longest period of sunlight of the year.  Now every day until December 21 (or so) the sunlight portion of the day will be less.  The science lesson is now over. See the internet for more information (or not). This year was the 11 th annual Summer Solstice in Time Square. The first year they had three people doing yoga in Time Square. This year split among five different classes during the day they had over 16,000 people participate. That is crazy! We were there.  Here is a link to their website.

Our class was the last one of the day, 7:45 pm to 9 pm. Yoga through the sunset and the onset of the night.  It was not dark after the sun went down. There are so many electronic billboards and signs that it is never dark in Time Square. Our day started out with driving 85 miles to Secaucus to take the train into New York’s Penn Station. We arrived in Penn Station around 5:30 pm. We were like salmon swimming upstream since the end of the day commute was in full swing and we were headed the opposite direction as the commuters.  We walked up 7 th Ave to 44 th Street  and found a Summer Solstice Yoga class in progress. I shot some pictures of this class and then we went to find a sandwich to eat while we waited for our class to start. We ate our dinner sitting on our rolled up yoga mats on the sidewalk of 44 th street.

Our yoga class got loaded into the penned off area around 7 pm and we all got lined up. In our section we had over 600 people. We sat and talked, looked around, took pictures and marveled at being in Time Square. Our space was right next to the Armed Forces recruiting center. If we turned around we could see the post where the ball drops on New Years Eve.  All during the next two hours we were part of the side-show that is Times Square.  People would lean on the barricades and take pictures and talk in dozens of different languages.

At 7:45 pm our class started. We started out on our backs, looking up at the sky.  Talk about way cool!. Over the next 75 minutes the instructor took us through various yoga posses. He was in a different area of Time Square but we could hear him and they had instructors and spotters to keep you on track if you lost your way. In several quiet moments of meditation you could hear the sirens  and the other noises of the city. At other times, I did not hear the noise or notice the lights. I heard the voice of the instructor and followed the instructors in our area. Then the instruction was given to go back onto our backs for the final pose. I leaned over to my DW and asked what time it was. She said it was 8:55 pm. Five more minutes to go. Where did the time go?  Talk about getting lost in your yoga head space..  We finished up, took some more pictures and left our yoga pen to walk around Time Square.

We walked back down 7 th Ave to Madison Square Garden. New York’s Penn Station is under the garden. We walked to the NJ Transit section and waited for the next train to New Jersey.  20 minutes later we were in Secaucus and heading home. We stopped at Rutt’s Hut for a few hot dogs on our way.  That visit is detailed in a different blog post.

An outstanding night, for sure. If possible, we will go back again next year.

Pictures, here are a few.  This link will take you to the Drop Box folder containing all the pictures.  Also, two Vine video’s can be found here and here.

Namaste

Looking forward..

What is that old saying? Tell God your plans and watch him laugh? Or something like that.  With reservations, here are a few upcoming things in the Lime Guy universe.

  • June 15 – Mac Mcanally will be playing a free concert on the beach in Atlantic City at 4 pm. There is a “special guest” listed on the website that the various Jimmy Buffett websites say might be Jimmy.
  • June 21 – my DW and I will be in Time Square to do yoga during the summer solstice.  We will be part of the 7:45 – 9 pm class. Afterwards, not really sure. A light bite and a beer and then back home to the Jersey shore
  • June 27 – Lime Guy turns 52 years old!
  • July 7 – Tour De Queens bike ride
  • July 28 – DS1 turns 25 years old!
  • July 30 – Scott Kirby will be performing at the Tuckahoe Inn in Beasleys Point, NJ
  • August 8 to August 12 – Lake Placid, New York for the Summit Lake Placid Lacrosse Tournament
  • August 25?-  DS2 returns to Marywood for his senior year
  • August 25? – DS3 returns to the University of Scranton for his Junior year

Come September 1 we could revisit this blog and see how the summer really went!

Yesterday my mini van turned 260,000 miles. The bottom of the doors are showing some rust and corrosion. But, it starts and stops (or it did this morning).

Last night my DW and I went to a new (to me) yoga studio. Our Tuesday night adult school yoga is done until October so we are looking for a yoga class on Tuesday nights for the summer. The studio is called Hot or Not Yoga. The concept being that they have a room for hot yoga and a room for not hot yoga. The opposite of hot yoga might (you would think) be cool yoga. The room was 82 degrees last night.  That is almost hot yoga in my mind. The class was free with passes that we got at the Founder’s Day parade. My DW wants to go back.  I am undecided. The studio is expensive. Maybe she can go and I will walk or practice lacrosse with whichever of my lacrosse children that is available.

Sunday, DS3 got up early and took the train to NYC to spend the day with his girlfriend. She lives quite a way out on Long Island, so meeting in the city is a halfway point.  He shared a few of the details from the day. It seems like they had a good time. DS2 is traveling to Copenhagen, NY today to visit his girlfriend for a few days.  I’m glad my girlfriend is right her in town.

Here are a few pictures with captions, enjoy!

Thanks for reading and welcome aboard to the new people following this blog!

Namaste

Tour De Brooklyn 2013..

Sunday I rode with 1300 of my closest friends in the 9 th annual Tour De Brooklyn. The ride is sponsored by and benefits Transportation Alternatives.  They are an advocacy group for walkers, bike riders and people that use the public transit in New York City.  I first encountered them a few years ago when my brother the weather man and I rode in the Five Boro Bike Tour.  I did not know any of the 1299 (or so) other people that rode in the Tour De Brooklyn. The organizers told us at the beginning of the ride that were riding with 1300 of our closest friends.  That might be a tough sell in NYC. But, we were all there for the same reason, to ride our bikes in a “parade” though Brooklyn.

The ride was about 20 miles long. The pace, a leisurely 7 or 8 miles per hour. When you are used to riding around 14 or 15 miles an hour, that pace is sometime painful. You still have to pedal the same distance, it just takes longer. The demographics of the ride? Funny you should ask. There was every size, shape, color or bikes, helmets, shoes, outfits and people that you can imagine. I took nearly 200 pictures before and at the rest stop of the riders and their bikes. I will post a few of the interesting ones down below. Here is a Drop Box link to the folder with all the pictures.  Enjoy!  Maybe if you or someone you know rode in the tour, you picture might be in that collection.

Thoughts about riding for 3.5 hours with 1300 other bike riders:

  • The start and stops (beginning, water break, restart and finish) are the scariest part of the ride. Everybody wants to go or stop at the same time.
  • Can you imagine riding 20 miles in a skirt, tube top and high heels? More of a question for the women readers (I hope!)  But then it was NYC!
  • How about bringing your dog with you on the ride. The dog rode in a back pack getting out now and then to smell the fire hydrants
  • Maybe riding with your four better than best friends is great way to spend a Sunday morning but riding four across and talking with 1000 bike riders behind you isn’t the best plan. Two at a time is good for an easy conversation, bike ride. That way the rest of us can get by.
  • Being thankful that the person you saw wipe out in the last mile of the ride was not you
  • Wondering what the crowds in some of the “downtown” stretches of Brooklyn thought about the 1300 bikes riding down the middle of their streets, closing off the cross-streets and cross-walks for I’m guessing 15 minutes at a time, or more.
  • It was fun to part of something bigger than just my normal day-to-day
  • Bring sun screen next time

I had fun. So much fun that I signed up for the Tour De Queens. That ride goes off July 7.  Maybe I will meet some of my 1300 Tour De Brooklyn friends over in Queens.

Here are a few pictures from the ride, enjoy!

Namaste

 

Suddenly summer in New Jersey..

Well, another week has passed by, between blogs.  I want to take just a moment to thank everyone that read the story that I posted the last week. I understand that 2000 words is way too long for a blog post. But, it seems to be a good length for a fictional (mostly) short story. Tonight as I am writing this, we are experiencing our first thunderstorm of 2013.  Not the crazy kind of storm that we have in August and September, just some flashes, booms and so far very little rain.  The temperatures for the last two days have finally been in the 70’s. The next two days are supposed to be colder and unsettled (cloudy and rainy).

Saturday I turned over the dirt in the garden to kick off another growing season. I added cow manure to the soil and planted 19 romaine lettuce plants and 8 spinach plants.  The rest of the plants will get planted in two weeks when the weather will be more consistently above 40 degrees during the overnight hours.  We planted two flower boxes of petunias, one purple for my DW, the other yellow and black, for me.  We also planted some fresh herbs in a window box on the back porch.

Sunday, my DW and I traveled to NYC once again. This week we drove up to the train station in Secaucus, NJ and took the train one stop into New York’s Penn Station.  We walked west to around 30 th and 10 Ave where we picked up the High Line. The High Line is a 1 mile elevated linear park that runs from 30 th street south to about 14 th street. The High Line was built on what was elevated train tracks. The walk was pretty easy, the crowds always seemed to be heading towards us, like we were salmon swimming upstream. 

After our walk we traveled to the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn via the subway. My DW and I are re-learning how to get around NYC.  We both grew up about 20 miles from the city and I traveled into the city many times in my late teens.  In Williamsburg we walked around and enjoyed a decent meal at a restaurant called Station. I had a funky burger and my DW had mussels with a white wine sauce.  after lunch we walked around the Bedford Ave area of Williamsburg for an hour or so. The warm weather really brought out the crowds.

I had a good night playing lacrosse Monday night. My body was tired from gardening on Saturday and walking on Sunday. I was able to score my first goal in about four weeks.  Tuesday night we went to adult school yoga. Part of the class was spent doing couples yoga.  This is fun since we get to do yoga with our partner and laugh and smile.

Here is a link to the pictures from Sunday’s walk in NYC.  I will also include a few pictures at the bottom of this page.

Thanks for reading and have good week!

Namaste

Enjoying a night off.

Today is Tuesday, March 26, 2013. We should be at adult school yoga tonight, but the instructor is on vacation this week.  That only means one thing, wine with dinner!  You can’t have wine with dinner and then go to yoga. Or, at least I can’t. Today was partly sunny, the forecast was for sunny and 50 degrees. Last year at this time we had already had several days in the 70’s here in NJ. Not this year.  Bitch, bitch.

Sunday was a fun day for us. My DW and I joined a website called www.HowAboutWe.com The premise is that they find “dates” that you can take your better half on.  Currently, they are only in NYC. I found them on Twitter and have been watching their offerings for the last month or so. This week they offered a deal on an appetizer, meal and pitcher of sangria at a restaurant called Taka Taka. The restaurant is a Mexican – Japanese Fusion Sushi restaurant.  The meal that we shared is called Shabu – Shabu. The table where you sit is glass-topped and in the center of the table is a heating element. They bring a pot of broth that gets heated on the heating element. Then you put the chives, mushrooms, lettuce, carrots, rice noodles, cucumbers and tofu into the boiling broth to make a vegetable soup. Then they bring paper-thin sliced rib roast that you take (using your chop sticks) and dunk in the boiling soup until the meat is cooked to your satisfaction.

DS3 and his GF rode the train and subway and met us at the restaurant. We had a lot of fun. The other neat thing the offer is sushi. There is a conveyor belt that goes around the entire restaurant. On the belt rides the plates of sushi. Each plate has a number (to identify what is on the plate) and the plates are different colors. Each different color plate has a different price. When the sushi comes around, you look at the number, consult your place mat for a description and if you are interested, you take the plate and enjoy! When the bill comes you pay by the number and color of the plates consumed. After lunch we dropped the kids off at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and went home.  Sunday in the big city, now that is surely different from grocery shopping in Waretown, NJ!

Here are a few pictures from Sunday’s adventure.

Namaste

 

 

Signs of Spring..

Today is March 6, 2013. Tonight on the east coast we have another storm that is forecast to bring rain, high winds and coastal flooding to New Jersey.  The wind at times sounds like a freight train going past the house.  This is a good night to be indoors. The forecast also calls for a little bit of snow. Somehow, Washington, DC (south of us) has been getting snow all day, just rain here.  Warmer in the north, colder in the south. Welcome to the wacky world of weather.

Signs of spring..

  • The first crocuses of the year blossomed last week in the sunshine. A picture of them is below
  • DS2 is home for his spring break. We found out that spring break was upon us when the university tweeted wishing the students a nice and safe week off. We are usually more on top of things with our children. Picture below.
  • DS1 has a new truck to drive at work. His company purchased a flat-bed tow truck to move the larger trees that the driver might need mechanical help loading and unloading.  Picture below.
  • DS3 spent the weekend on LI visiting his girlfriend. He successfully navigated the roads in and around New York City. No pictures below (asked, did not get any)
  • Adult school yoga started last night. It was fun to get back to breathing and stretching (at the same time). We had four new students this week. It was nice to see a few new faces.  And, it was nice to see the usual group that attends this class.
  • The St. Patrick’s Day parade in Scranton is this weekend. It’s interesting that Marywood seems to send their kids home during the parade week and the University of Scranton (downtown, parade central) keeps their kids in school for the same week.
  • Girl Scout cookies, a sure sign of spring!
  • Monday night lacrosse moves to an hour later, I had a goal Monday night!

 Enjoy the pictures and smile!

Namaste

Snowdrift Vanilla Porter..

Is a Porter a beer?  It certainly is not an ale.  This particular Porter is made by the Leinenkugel’s Brewing Company of  Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin.  I give this beer a thumbs up. My DW likes stouts and porters and she likes this one as well.   We also bought the Brooklyn Brewery’s Winter Ale today. I did not like this at all. I will save for one of the kids if they will drink it.  It might be me, I am willing to concede that. We walked around COSTCO today and I liked one of the ten or so products being offered as samples. I usually can find some redemption in almost every free sample I taste. Not today..

I seem to be suffering from a post-Christmas sugar rush crash. I tried to explain this to DS2 at dinner today.  The build up to Christmas was intense. The delivery of the holiday met expectations (that’s good, right?). The next day, sugar crash. Way up high, then way down. Why? You ask? I’m not really sure. Maybe it’s the real world intruding on my holiday sugar rush. Wednesday we had four inches of rain fall in our area. We had no rain in the cellar. The waterproofing from the fall continues to work. We have a cellar window that is at the ground level. In the past we have had water flood in this window during very heavy rain events. Wednesday night we spent four hours bailing the window box to keep the rain out.  I am devising a plan to permanently solve this problem.

Wednesday we also found out that one of the boys that played with DS1 on his college lacrosse team was found dead on Christmas around lunch time.  This was an unexpected death. At this point I have not heard the definitive cause of death. The family has a history of fatal brain aneurysms. The boy was also in some trouble with the law and may have taken his own life. At this point I don’t know.  DS1 took this pretty hard.

Fast forward to Saturday night. DS1 is in Pittsburgh visiting with his college lacrosse teammates. The trip was scheduled two weeks ago. This can be a good time for them to get together and grieve, if they are careful. The funeral and such will be held near Seattle, Wa. DS3 is on Long Island this evening. I took him to the train station this morning. He took the train into New York City to meet up with a girl who lives on Long Island and goes to the same university as him.  They spent the day in NYC and have made their way to her mom’s house on Long island.  This is a leap of faith on the part of his parents.

Me, I’m working through it. Pictures, of course!  Enjoy!

Namaste

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