Tuesday, August 25, 2020

Out and back......

7:31 am - Tuesday - August 25th - Coupeville, WA - 48° F, 86% humidity, wind - CALM......partly cloudy today with a forecast high of 65° F.  On this day in 2017 we were in Yellowstone National Park, and just days from our 46th wedding anniversary....I have no pictures, but I was reminded by what I wrote about our activities on August 25, 2017 of how, and why I love our lifestyle......

"Also, just over the horizon of this current weekend will be the celebration by TLE and I of our 46th wedding anniversary on Tuesday..............I have to just sit here a few moments letting that amazing truth sink in to its fullest........46 years together through thick and thin.........ups and downs........through one adventure after another......and now we find ourselves in the midst of the grandest adventure of them all as 'Vagabonders Supreme' (a phrase coined by 'Tioga George' back in the year 2003).  For those who have only begun to read our blog recently we began living fulltime in our 1982 Newell February 1, 2011, and traveling fulltime February 1, 2012.  With each passing month it feels as if this is the way we have always lived.....our former 'sticks and bricks' workaday life seems almost surreal in retrospect.....almost like someone else's life....we are different people than we were then.  We had no idea, really, into what we were getting ourselves, but we went forth anyway.  Our five children, 6 (now 7) grand children, and one great grand child (now 2) are mute testimony of that life we once lived, and are, frankly, our greatest accomplishment.  

Liberating ourselves from most of our physical possessions back in 2011, which kept us anchored in one place for so many years, and becoming 'Vagabonders Supreme' is our second greatest accomplishment.  We attempt daily to live what remains of our lives to the fullest extent possible, and cherish every minute, every hour, every day we have left together.  The recent passing of our friend Michael has reaffirmed the importance of living every day, every moment as if it were our last.  Life is fragile enough to begin with, and now in our advanced years has become even more fragile as we see a steady stream of people we have known for decades passing one by one.  We must not allow anger and unforgiveness to steal our peace, contentment and happiness.  The easy path in life is to passively stew in these negative feelings.......it seems odd to say, but I am convinced one must actively, daily choose to be happy......fight for it, if you will.  As Abraham Lincoln famously said...."Folks are usually as happy as they make up their minds to be.....".
"

.....it is even more meaningful for us today than it was then.

While I was pressure washing decks, and concrete Sunday TLE was busy picking more black berries.  This time she made Black Berrrie Jam, and I was the recipient of her culinary urges Monday morning.....there is not much better than Black Berry Jam on sourdough toast.  Add to that a wonderfully sweet and ripe nectarine and one might think they have achieved nirvana..........


....it's been a couple of weeks since we last rode our eBikes, and Monday seemed like the perfect day for another ride.  When I drove down to Freeland with Bob last week he showed me how to drive most of the way without using SR-525, and, therefore, avoid the ever present north/south traffic.  He also took me by a place called Greenbank Farm which features local wines, cheeses, hiking, picnic areas, etc.  As a result I made the farm our half way destination on this 19+ mile out and back ride.  We left home around 11 am following the same route Bob drove a week ago.  When you drive a route you sometimes do not realize how many hills there might be, or how steep they might be, but believe me, riding a bicycle along that same route you find out very quickly how many hills there are, and there are a lot!  Of course, with an eBike hills are really a nonissue......you just up the assist level and power up the hills, and then coast down them.....you still get a good work out, but there is no suffering involved.  At 70+ years old we are not into suffering anymore.  

It took us just 55 minutes to cover the 9.85 miles to Greenbank Farm.  What we did not expect was to find them open for business.  I had checked Yelp earlier in the morning and saw they were only open Thursday through Sunday, and so we just planned to take a break there, and then ride back, however, we found they were open for business....at least the business of selling wine, and cheese, but their restaurant was closed, and they could not offer wine tasting under the current COVID-19 mandates by the governor of Washington state.  On the spot we decided to buy a couple of small bottles of wine, some crackers, kettle chips, cheese, salami and sit at one of the outdoor picnic tables to consume them, which is apparent legal.....




 Apparently I was holding the temple piece of my dark glasses in front of the camera while taking this pictures of the Greenbank Cheese store.....lol.....

 A couple of bottles of chilled Rosé, please....

 .....and some cheese, crackers, chips and salami!

......at first I did not know what we were to use to cut the cheese, but then I remembered I always carry a Swiss Army knife in my Camelbak!  It was the prefect, unexpected interlude for which we always strive when on a bike ride, or hike!

By 1 pm we were on our way back along the same country roads we had ridden out to Greenbank Farm, and home just before 2 pm with big smiles upon our faces.  We were both tired, but not worn out, and our eBikes performed up to expectations.  There were some very steep climbs, and I actually, for the first time, used assist level 4 (the highest on my Haibike) up a few of them, while TLE used assist level 5 (the highest on her eBike).  In all we covered 19.74 miles, burned 937 caloric units, and had a total elevation gain going and coming of over 1,900'.....thank goodness for electric assist eBikes......


.....for Happy Hour TLE trotted out our new Margarita goblets.......



.....which made me quite happy!  TLE has become the resident sunset photographer, and has provided another great sunset picture......


......life is good.....thanks for stopping by!

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