22 August 2013

Bike commute, wineries, sister visit, DC summer bucket list, margaritas, and my dog.

Would you believe I took this photo while biking and didn't fall over? Aerobars are good for many things.
I had a very enjoyable bike commute home today. I ran into my friend Janine when we were both getting our bikes from the bike cage at the office and our commute is the same for a good 6 miles, so I was looking forward to her company. A little past Union Station, we ran into two other cyclist who inquired on how to get to the Mall. Janine and I were headed that way so we told them to tag along. As we made our way over to the Capitol, we learned that they had taken the train up to DC from Raleigh, NC, bikes in tow, and were going to bike back to Raleigh. The first leg of their journey was going to be from Union Station to the W&OD out to Leesburg. The trails can be a little confusing, so we were happy to help guide them out to the W&OD. We had a nice little paceline going, with a few stops to take pictures in front of the Capitol, Washington Monument, and Jefferson Memorial. Someday I'd love to do a bike trip like that (eh-em C&O Canal girls weekend trip in 2014?). They were both so nice and so enthusiastic about their travels and thanked Janine and I profusely for helping them out, and it was truly our pleasure. Days like today are perfect examples of why I feel like to have such a neat bike commute.

At Barrel Oak Winery
My sister (technically sister in law, but I don't like to make that distinction) came into town last week! She's going to be starting work as a nurse on the west coast next week, which is a total dream come true and she's worked so hard for it, I'm thrilled for her. As a last hurrah before the whirlwind of work begins, she visited and we did lots of wine tasting, cheese eating, a bit of shopping, pie baking, and down time reading and chatting. We went out to one of our favorite wineries in Virginia - Barrel Oak Winery. It is a picturesque dog friendly winery out in the hills with an outdoor tasting area, plenty of outdoor seating, and while you can purchase food there (mmmmm warm brie with crackers), you can also bring a picnic lunch. It was lovely and Miles had a good time too.

Miles taking in the sights and wishing he was a country dog.
I'm working on my DC Summer Bucket List. It's not very long and I've actually not done a great job at doing a ton of things, but I finally made it to Jazz in the Sculpture Garden last Friday. The weather was perfect (as in sunny, not too hot, and zero humidity), we had a nice big spot to spread out our picnic of wine, cheese (of course), a baguette, some salad, and CUPCAKES. And the music was the classic big-band style of our grandparents' generation. Even though I don't take advantage of it nearly enough, I love the fact that so many interesting, fun (and free) things exist in the city and there's always something to do if I so choose.

Sarah and I!
I also took advantage of Restaurant Week on Tuesday with Dawn, Mindy (who had the Best Race Ever at Ironman Mont Tremblant!), Sarah and Kendra - thanks for organizing Sarah! We went to Bandalero in Georgetown. I took the metro to Foggy Bottom and managed to get lost trying to make my way to Georgetown (it's typically a straight shot down the street, but ONLY if you pick the right street from the cluster that is the nearby traffic circle. I chose wrong. A few times). Thankfully I was on foot and not in a car. I had not one but TWO margaritas at dinner, it has been so long since I'd had one I kind of forgot how strong tequila tastes and the first few sips were a shock. The food was so good, and it was all a blur, they just kept bringing out plate after plate and we easily kept up, eating plate after plate and there was LITERALLY nothing left. And then we stayed an extra hour chatting.

You can tell Mindy just did an Ironman because that spoon is poised, ready to go to work on the ice cream dish!
Swimming - I AM BACK! I led my lane this week! I did so much fly my arms were deadweights by the end. And I had fun - that is the most important thing. The one part of swim practice that I don't like is the 30 seconds before you get in the pool and get all wet. You stand there on the deck, slowly putting on your swim cap, adjusting your goggles for the millionth time, hoping maybe you can get out of warming up if you wait just a little longer because it's just a matter of moments before Flanagan whistles for everyone else to cease and desist and come back to the wall for the workout. But as soon as you jump in the water and push off the wall and begin swimming, the chill of the water quickly forgotten, that feeling of not wanting to swim is forgotten.

And my running and biking - I'm feeling happy with both of them. I think I've finally shaken the residual fatigue from Ironman out of my legs. I've also done well with getting to bed at a reasonable time and getting up to get the workouts in hasn't been much of a problem. Technology has been banned from the upstairs, which has been helpful with the whole getting to bed on time. I'm currently reading Jacob Have I Loved. I saw it as I was flipping through the Kindle store and the name of the book sounded familiar, like something I had read before, and while the language isn't terribly childish, I feel like it was on the reading list for school in my middle school years (maybe high school? no idea). I downloaded a sample, and I don't remember reading it as a kid, so I downloaded the rest. I'm finally on a roll when it comes to reading - this is my third book in the past week. I'm nowhere near my goal of reading 60 books this year, so if I crack 20-30 I will need to be content with that.


Running Librarian said...

looks like you have had lots of fun. I have to try the winery. :)

LoveOfShoes said...

Um, isn't WOD to Leesburg the opposite direction of NC?? Just sayin....

xooxox love that pic!

Kathy said...

What's this C&O canal girls weekend trip? I've been as far as Harper's Ferry and back by bike and it was awesome. There's a hostel just off the trail there that caters to AT hikers looking for a bed to sleep in for a night or two, but is also good for cyclists. They were so nice to us.