Most of you know the kind of weather the Midwest has been experiencing. Cold. Rainy or snowy. And windy. I tend to need incentives to ride in these conditions. A weekend getaway in Milwaukee is a really good incentive. Not wanting to be stuck in a car for the drive over, being in great need of training miles, having good food/beer waiting for me at the end, getting to see two friend's new bike shop and having a tailwind/crosswind vs. headwind made the decision easy. I'd bike to Milwaukee and hopefully get my first century of the season in.
I rolled out around 8:30am on Saturday. I made a brief stop on the East side to say "hi" to my riding group, who were heading out...you guessed it, for a Northwesterly loop. At least, I thought, the sun is making momentary appearances and the temperature is out of the 20's. The first thirty miles rolled by with ease. Other than the annoying traffic and crumbling roads, I had not a worry on my mind. Just before hitting Lake Mills, the sleet started. My heart jumped and I got a bit nervous since I only donned a wind jacket vs. a rain jacket. If I got wet in these temperatures, it would spell trouble. A quick coffee stop in Lake Mills allowed the precipitation to pass and I was left with only clouds.
Johnson Creek passed by in a blur, and until I hit Concord, I didn't really stop to look around. I was treated by a beautiful wind block and I sat to eat my sandwich next to an old hand hewn home--not unlike the type you'd find in the Smokies.
I won't go into what I thought of Waukesha--a place I try very hard to avoid. Let's just say it took me at least thirty minutes to find my wait out. It reminded me of a Las Vegas casino...or hell. It took three residents and one mail carrier to get me onto Arcadia/Greenfield/59, which is the major road heading East out of town. I'm guessing people who live in Waukesha never leave.
As I pulled into the place I'd be staying for the night, I decided I wasn't ready to end for the day. Over 85 miles and I still had a little kick left in me. After a bit of fuel and a warm beverage, I was off to Coast In Bicycles (you'll read more about this shop in my next post). Riding down Greenfield and National, two roads I'd never ridden before, I couldn't help think of Nicollet, Lake and Franklin Avenue in Minneapolis. Block after block brought great Mexican and Asian restaurants as well as grocery stores. Oh how I miss living near this! On my way back to quickly shower before dinner, I couldn't resist doing a speed lap through the State Fair Grounds. It was so odd being there without the hoards of people and animals--almost eerie. Fond memories of hot summer days, coated with fryer grease and animal hair came to mind. I know, that sounds disgusting.
|Dinner at Alem|
|Could it really be April 14th?|
|Biking along the Menomonee river|