Our friends invited us to go with them on a bike ride on saturday, nominally to a store, but by such a circuitous route that we knew we'd never get there. We planned on riding out to the bay, riding the trails there up to Redwood City, and doing the same thing back. Here's how it really went:
We [A-Ron, Boni, Olivander, Lize-Ahhh, Pester, MDester, BChester, Squeaker] packed everything we'd need [sans tire repair kit; more on that later] and rode off. Palo Alto has a lot of great bike paths, so [despite some terrible directions from 511.org; more on that later] we had a rather easy route through residential neighborhoods, up and over the freeway, and right out to the Palo Alto Golf Course and its surrounding trails.
Our route, following the aforementioned 511.org directions, had us following a network of trails around the periphery of the bay for several miles. One of the trails purported to cross train tracks. It didn't. So we had to backtrack several miles of narrow dirt trails [we all had road bikes; whoops] to bypass the tracks. According to Google Earth we had gone 15 miles by the time we reached Bayfront Park in Redwood City [4.44 miles as the tern flies]. Lize-Ahhh was ready for this thing to end, so we sat down on some blankets and ate lunch. We had French Emmenthaler on crackers, plums, and, of course, string cheese. All these pictures were taken there. We know that Olivander has other female friends, but none worship him as much as BChester. Observe.
We walked to the top of a low hill at the park and played around for a while. BChester and Olivander were having a total blast. This is a rock they were using as a slide.
Not sure what she was doing here. She probably wasn't either.
Squeaker's face is covered in lots of things. Lize-Ahhh's graham cracker. Pre-chewed stale rosemary herb bread. Her own spit. Ground squirrel dung. You know, that stuff. [seriously, she partially slipped into a squirrel hole]
Speaking of ground-squirrel holes... Lize-Ahhh is keeping her feet cool in the very same one that tried to swallow Squeaker. There were probably 73.5 quadrillion squirrels there, by a conservative estimate.
We eventually started back. About 1.5 miles into the return trip, A-Ron got a flat. Remember now that we had no tire patching kit. So he started walking [way out in East Palo Alto] and everyone else rode home, with Boni now pulling Olivander and Lize-Ahhh. We took a more direct route [and avoided all the backtracking involved in the trip out] and got home in about 9.5 miles. Boni drove off and saved A-Ron who was about 4 miles closer to home than he was when we left him. Nice of him to save gas like that.
It was a lot of fun! We definitely got a taste of what we're in for when we sell our car [more on that later; much later. Like, tomorrow maybe.]. None of our trips with the kids previously had passed 8 miles round-trip. So the fact that 25 rough, windy, dirty miles turned out ok seems to indicate that we'll be fine. But we'll need a patching kit.