Thursday, 28 February 2013

Andalucia Bike Race day 5

This is it. Cancelled due to poor weather. Raining and 3C this morning. We put on showercaps, rain jacket, taped plastic bags over our feet. I think it would actually be ok for us to ride, I've had worse. But it's fine. A delay start would have worked, as by 10:30 it's not raining and seems ok. But someone said it's also so we don't wreck the trails, which is fair. It's pretty nice out now though, race start was pouring.

Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Andalucia Bike Race day 4

Once the bus stopped, we all huddled in a blue collar morning place for coffee cause it was cold and windy. With only minutes to spare we rode to the start line, but snapped the first self photo, which turned out to be prescient. We essentially rode a straight shot up to the left behind us, across, then through that pass.

The little town pictured was 45 minutes of climbing into the race, then we just worked our way across the back of that mountain after going through the pass. Kept climbing till we got to snow line, then went up from there (and that's even with 500m cut out due to snow).

Really beauty day. More road riding at start, which I'm fine with. Spreads it out. I push Cindy, but not so much that we "go faster", it's more that we can both exercise hard that way and be close. We have funny moments out there and have good laughs. Confusion on who's bike is who's, standing or sitting, and she laughs at herself for just rolling over obstacles and bouncing all over (usually a good start is just going for it).

Cindy had a little wipeout on the snow doubletrack. I kept joking a few weeks back that our weekend ice rides would get us ready for the icy sections here. It turned out be true... So she scratched up her other knee. Better than ripping out stitches. But she didn't wipe out from incompetence really, she was trying to bunny hop the center snow of the double track to pass slow Fredericos. I'm amazed at the aggression coming out.

Last descent was awesome. Long technical singtrack with bermed corners and jumps. What a gem. Except for the 5k climb after to get out of that valley before coasting into the finish.

Today was another day of what I expected it to be like. No bottlenecks (other than a bridge a minute in) due to the straight up climb off the start... But none of consequence. Maybe not complete "mountain biking" all day, but a great fitness test + singletrack. Heavenly scenery, little Spanish mountain towns, hotel with plenty of carbonera and bolognesa. Cindy's rocket booster is getting tired, pasta helps though.

We're getting a lot of use out of electrical tape, mostly to tape plastic over Cindy's stitches for the shower. Our hotel seems quite nice to be annihilating thee bathroom with muddy kits every day... oh well.

Sounds like Shawn's partner is done due to the cracked rib. I didn't see Kate/Jon/Thomas/Dave yet to hear their days.

Andalucia Bike Race day 4 pre race

Day 3 was a 6am to 11pm affair. Bus, ride, bus, clean up, snack, ride coordination with Bunnin, dinner, missed massage, bike drop off, home. Snack was in our lobby, the bar has a mounting device for a pig's leg so jamon sandwiches are just carved off and served up. We're up at 6 again for day 4, and to be honest I actually do feel decently rested. We do some last minute blow drying of kit, as our bathroom is a full laundry room which can get some, but not all mud out. It can also remove some, but not all wetness overnight when we have so many kits being washed, and the heater on max with the fan on all night. We jam in some breakfast, then head for the bus. We have the comical group of Spaniards on our bus that make every bus ride whimsical with songs, chants, jokes I don't get, etc. It's fun. Either me, my friends, or middle aged guys in anglophone Canada don't do as much enthusiastic rally calling for no particular reason.

Jaen (remember the j=h sound) is beautiful. Mountains right near by on one side. Other side is olive fields as far as the eye can see in row after row on the rolling hills. Snow caps mean our day 4 route will cut out a bit of climbing to avoid a snow pass. Temps are nice, I think like 15C highs mid day in the sun. Fine with armwarmers, vest, knee warmers and keeping moving. The bus this morning in the shade before sunrise on mountain roads say 2C. Puddles in the olive fields that I can see from the bus are frozen. It doesn't seem that concerning, we've been warm enough, and have brought windbreakers and our fleece gloves for standing around in each morning, we can start riding with those if need be and put them in our pockets later.

Shawn (and I) have been marvelling at his Peugeot 308 station wagon. Every time I come to Europe I wonder why I don't have some tight handling little euro wagon. I guess practically speaking that means a VW Jetta or BMW 3 series at home.

There's some hiccups, but so far this is a good event in a great part of the world. Off course, I'd say half our hassles would be gone if we were at the main race hotel - if you're going to do this one, mark the signup date and hit it right away so you're in the A hotel pack. Massage is there, buffets are better, busses come and go from there, all the mechanics are there. Technology could fix the bottlenecks on first few days, or you can decide you don't care and just take it as training and happiness to be biking in Spain. I'd say with the level of walking skills sections vs. "forced" riding them (ie. if everyone rode you feel pressure to) makes this an excellent beginner race. Very touristic, manageable terrain and distance. Staff are excellent, helpful, positive, funny, multilingual, and seem to never tire. Norwegian Viktoria makes us feel like locals with her helpfulness.

Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Andalucia Bike Race Day 3

Today was awesome. This is what I pictured this race to be. First 90 minutes were mostly climbing through olive farms on small gravel roads so no problems with congestion (until one technical section... err by section I mean a trail with a rock in it). Long beautiful climbs. Saddle of pass transfer was muddy, which we ended up ingesting some after Cindy did a waterslide style wipeout in a field of mud. I hope the mud doesn't have too many stomach incompatible things living in it. Fantastic mountain valley descent that was very technical. But people were strung out enough that you could pass anyone walking pretty easy. Descent from that valley into some quintessential castle + walled city mountain town, where we rode down the switchback steps and trail. First switchback had a cheering section, and I came into it fast. The lady watching was losing her mind to wave me to slow down for fear of catastrophe. I high fived her as I went around. I hope that blew her mind in a positive way.

Long steep road climb after which was spectacular way to get up and over to next valley. Views of the snow capped Sierra Nevadas in the distance. Great descent again, and enough space to pass usually.

We dug in on the last gravel road climb to the third pass and kept passing other teams. Last 3 kilometers had a 500m wall style climb which we attacked.

See that smile Cindy has? Don't be fooled. That hid ruthless pedalling today. Plus her booster rocket engine felt really good today too. So fun just moving forward all day and getting the bike race sensation.

Monday, 25 February 2013

Andalucia Bike Race - couple downsides

Exponential growth of riders is great... for business. What isn't great is congestion on the trails. They can technically accommodate wave starts with the timing system, meaning the actual timing system in use currently can do this with our number plates... but it's hard for towns to shut down traffic a few times instead of once. It delivers a sub-par experience. Going back to the timing system, it's not even real times, meaning we start at 10, and when you finish, your time is finish time minus 10am. It isn't based on your chip, so if you're person 500 to start, you're 3 minutes down already given the start queue maze. Naturally this doesn't really impact those in spot 500 much because they don't care. A counter is "well, the first x km are neutral anyway, so it doesn't matter." Not so... that's exactly the reverse incentive that people starting at the back are maximally incentivized to ride sketchy and "work their way up" the peloton even in the "neutral" start to overcome that deficit. It's a recipe for a gong show. For this race to be this size, I think at least minimum 200 person waves by three, and start nearer to edges of towns. Give them 2 minutes apart. Better would be 6 by 100 person starts.

Mechanical: I'm pretty self sufficient. There's some things you can't bring on planes, or by volume of luggage. The SRAM truck here won't bleed a Shimano brake. Ok I can see that. But they won't even give me any oil even though it's same stuff. They just say we aren't going to help you in any way shape or form. I also have XX shifter pods that are loose. But its not the clamps, it's the internal piece to the pods. Kate says hers at home have been like that always too. Junk. They say I can try tomorrow because they close at 7 (this is a giant semi truck/shop trailer front that's pulled out). Hello, close at 7? Have you heard of the mechanics on BC Bike Race or TransRockies that work all night to keep people rolling? Racers only come in at 1 or 2pm for the winners, so you're working max 6h days? Get real. Couple other little things... basically I think they adjust SRAM derailleurs a quarter turn.

Mechanical support was offered for whole race at a completely excessive price, "neutral support" sketchy at best (or not neutral), and not much availability of parts... examples: Jon can't find tubes; and separately, despite the announcer bragging every time on microphone that there's people from like 30 countries which would imply airplanes, CO2's are virtually impossible to find commercially. Then it's also people looking for pumps. Or patches. Or saddle bags to replace ripped ones. Or tires. Or multitools that were lost.

Andalucia Bike Race day 2

Last night at dinner some funny Spaniards gave us a local dessert/candy thing. It was like crumbly marzipan. I think they're the weirdest guys here, one has a big beard and seems to tell lots of jokes and for the most part has been wearing children size compression socks only over his calves (flourescent pink) and 70's style little running shorts. I can't talk to him enough to "get it", but I'm pretty sure his motif is just a mockery of mainstream.

We had a good breakfast, lots of euro styles to people watch, a Saeco coffee machine that has a lineup all morning long to do several hundred cups (if that thing broke there would be a riot), and good conversation with Dave and Thomas. Cindy went back up for a nap and I sat down with Iwona and Natasha, and mostly we talked Mongolia. Sounds interesting...

It strikes me that a very good hand full of people I've kept in touch with the best started in TransPortugal.

We started out through fields which got bottlenecked beyond belief at obstacles that shouldn't be obstacles. I had to remind myself to find zen like inner harmony at those times, and enjoy biking in Andalucia with Cindy. We were in a giant queue, with clowns going left and right to jam it up more, for mud crossings of creeks I could have ridden on my road bike. My analogy for the day is that mountain biking skills here are equivalent on average to human rights in Africa. Adjectives such as abysmal, inadequate and disappointing come to mind. At times I felt disdain, as in the quality of disdain a French waiter can only muster... here is some singletrack offering itself up for consumption (gourmet food) and you plebians can't even ride it (and you want ketchup with that??). Our new business idea is Cindy can do mountain bike skills camps here if enough machismo can be forgotten to take instruction to make it work.

We walked up and down some really big hills. Generally speaking, even in the walking lines, I'd ride. Both up and down. And chat. Not really to be difficult, but it's because it's possible and to show it can be done even at walking speed. Even the Spaniards joked about it being a walking race "vee valk up, vee valk down".

Highlight reel of the day section... Cindy first: we come down off this giant descent, with me behind. There's lots of guys ahead of Cindy. The trail drops to a road. We're going parallel to the road above the road, then turn left on a poorly constructed trail that goes straight down to the road in an erosion maximizing way. It increases in steepness as it approaches the road, then the road is flat, but with a gully right before. Not even flat, it's acute angled toward the hill. All that is meant to describe that it's a perfect endo creating situation. The guys are all walking, Cindy goes down the middle, and as it gets waay behind the saddle, she just pops the front wheel and does the last few feet that are basically a drop off. All the guys are amazed!

Erik's highlight of the day... we're approaching what I assume is a large downhill, as there's a guy walking up the hill towards a road we crossed with his shoulder looking like it was just dislocated. We get to the large descent which is awesome. Single track, sketchy dry dirt with marble rocks on top, one line, everyone walking. I ride to the left exposed edge side between the scrub foliage and the trail. A line of 5 guys hears me biding my time behind, they stop and look, and I squeeze by as they motion for me to. The front guy is still walking, and slips right when I go by. On a steep descent, my forearm on my handlebar is at approximately the same angle as a handrail. The guy who slips instinctively reaches out and grabs my arm for support while I'm rolling. He says "solido, estable!" (Solid, stable). All the 4 behind witnessed it. Once he let go (probably only a second), I carried on. Awesome.

Lots of nice singletrack after, which is where I got a few of today's action shots. After the next long climb, singletrack was interspersed with some marshy grass and bogs to complete everyone's chain suck issues. Last downhill was great, lots of nice rock features, lots of fun. We came into the last last downhill with the steep alluvial fan descent and Cindy made it... almost all the way. Her knee then hit a sharp rock stuck in the ground, so our last 5 minutes was trying not to bleed too much and going to get stitches. I washed 2 bikes, zoomed to our hotel 2km downhill, showered, got changed, brought food and clothes, tried to zoom 2km back uphill, and Cindy went from medical to Kate's room to change quick. Massage was great.

Ate dinner with Jon and Kate. Got caught up on their day (stuck in lines too) and Shawn and Scott apparently had a crash where Scott cracked a rib then they softpedalled rest. That sucks.

Sunday, 24 February 2013

Andalucia Bike Race day 1

Breakfast and commute to race start were easy and relaxing. I climbed a wall to take a photo of the start, another 15 mins later it would have been nearly full.

We were in the last portion of the queue. We were behind Danish Olympian Annika Langvald (or close to that spelling). Kate and Jon got there right before start. We started with a scenic lap of the old town, which was nice but a gong show. 600 riders through narrow streets with tourists was a 5 minute wait in points. The peloton at points would fill a street 500m long. Once we were out to the main drag again, a guy wiped out and someone rode over his wheel and taco'd it. That's tough when you don't even make it past the neutral start. Cindy and started at, and stayed at the back.

Once it started spreading out, I went pee in a field, let Cindy pace, then joined her on the first paved climb. 20 minutes in we were motoring past people. On a technical climb section she rode the whole thing in the rough while people walked the middle. Shortly after that we got to single track congestion on a climb that was really easy, but essentially I think a dismount or two caused probably a kilometer of riders to stop and stand and wait. That literally took 10 minutes to clear. Everything was rideable - ie. Cindy even got to the top and asked "what made people get off in there".

There's lots of fans out. I didn't know Cindy was so big in Europe to be honest... but it's like she has her own cheering section. She can climb the technical parts where people line up to watch. Plus she smiles. They yell venga venga for everyone, but for her it's 3x as loud and they throw in rubio or rubia, which is funny - it's essentially "go blondie". She gets a lot of cheers from the ladies.

Nice trails, pretty easy, but fun. We went down a stream, which then numbed our feet after riding 3 more hours. Carrying bikes down some massive lineup of a "technical" session, some guy absolutely had to get his shoulder in front of me, then proceeded to try to walk "through" Cindy's bike to pass her. This is when there's 20 people standing in line, and bushes right to both sides of the trail, and no space to actually pass, with his partner behind him too. I tap his shoulder and suggest its not worth it to be that way at that moment. He says "calm down, it's a 6 day race and it doesn't matter if you're in front right here" that it doesn't matter. I said "exactly, which is why you don't need to be pushing in front of a lady in a 20 person queue". I'm sure he sees it another way, but what people think at times is beyond me. He was anglophone of some origin, so we knew each others' views.

We did some fast riding along the flats of a canal, Cindy stayed in a good group. Some Spanish guy chatted to me a bit when I stopped to pee, then pulled him and his buddy back up to the group Cindy was in. He said I had a good wife.

Cindy blew through all the aid stations and I picked up whatever was requested, so she rode all day without stopping. We traversed the back of the mountains, did a final climb, then back down into town. The last descent had a lot of spectators, including a steep rutted alluvial fan of mud and loose gravel that Cindy rode down without hesitation. I kind of ride downhills fast, but not really. There's little point to pushing it when its way better that I don't flat or wreck something.

We rolled in with a time of 4:24. Cindy was relieved that we didn't have another 20k to go, as her computer was set to miles still from Breck.

We tried to not filth up our hotel room much, worked on our snacks.

People wear sexy stuff here for massages. The race pack says "wear something comfortable". I'm impressed at the euro interpretation of that.

We had a convenient dinner in our hotel with Thomas and Dave (and a lot of laughs) and were done "early" at 9:30.

Saturday, 23 February 2013

Andalucia Pre-ride

View of Cordoba. It's a nice clean little city from what I've seen so far. Big dinner with the whole gang of us including Kate's family was very nice!

Cordoba site seeing

The old part of the city has changed religions a few times... somehow I'm guessing the inanimate objects like the bricks and trees don't care too much.

Andalucia Bike Race Day 0

Cindy's sleep has been animated lately. She confirmed that she does like Christmas trees, hummed the Beverly Hills cop soundtrack, woke me up to make sure the people were all right - and most notably - came up with our team motto: "we can do it!".

TomTom GPS do the trick, but one thing I'm not impressed with is they tell you route guidance like a second before you need to turn. They're like having a 7 year old kid give instructions. It's completely inadequate for functional driving to be going 60kph then it says "turn right in 50 feet" and by the time it's done, you're past the turn. It's fine if you look at the graphical display.

Cindy decided that breakfast at our hotel was good, mostly because it included pan au chocolate.

We built our bikes in the morning, dropped the rental car off then realized I forgot to fill it with gas, so we'll get dinged a bit on that. Walked around with Thomas and Dave through the old part of town and had coffee and another pan au chocolate. Shawn and Ashley were at the hotel when we got back, so we suited up and went for a ride overlooking town. Race checkin went smoothly, then it's just sitting around wishing food was available.

Friday, 22 February 2013

Settling in to Las Adelfas, Cordoba

The only time we've encountered the police so far was when one came running up the highway waving us over to the far left lane and to slow down... for a lost goat that had wandered onto the road.

Cindy's Converse have been leaking water in for last two trips, so we got her to chuck them out in favour of these Nikes. Those old ones were 10 years old. They have intense colors available here in their soccer shoe lines.

We got some groceries, and screwed up the line by not weighing our bananas. Everyone is nice, I understand enough to get people's instructions, and they tell us some english too. I think the race food is good, but we only move rooms twice, and thought a few snacks from race finish to Spanish dinner times was wise.

We checked out the race hotel 2km away, looks like the buzz is starting.

Spanish road trip

We stayed awake half the night, fell asleep right before our alarms. Woke up 3h later when the maid knocked. Shoot. Set off into the land of jamon, queso y vino and got our Peugeot 308 rental which just barely fits 2 people, 2 bike boxes and luggage. I actually downsized once seeing it and figuring for sure we'd fit out stuff. A French car in Spain has all English buttons and labels - which makes Quebec's language uproars on the Italian restaurant that had "pasta" on the menu all the more ridiculous. It had under 1,000k on it and was beautiful to drive.

The TomTom GPS wasn't charged, so I navigated randomly and got to the highway to Cordoba without one wrong turn! When the GPS finally charged, our hotel's address was apparently "0" which didn't register well. We had a picnic lunch with jamon, queso and pan. And chocolates, but not the one pictured, which probably shouldn't be taken too literally.

Little bit overcast, but warm enough, and more mountainous as we get to the Andalucia region.

Wednesday, 20 February 2013


See that down there? Just below the cloudy surface? It's elusive but it's there... I've always suspected Truth is discoverable in a margarita...

Deadgoat mixed team departs!

I feel like we're already winning. Cindy is a happy teammate. Once we're done work, done packing, through check in, through security, it actually feels like time to relax. BA didn't charge for bike bags. The lady who checked the bike bags was entirely normal, not treating them like alien carcasses from outer space. We seem to be able to get to Madrid, and despite Iberia's strikes efforts to derail us, we'll figure it out from there. Plus I'm having "the world's freshest margarita" at the airport. As long as we get home as happy as we are leaving, this should be awesome!

What we can learn from Ian Hibell

Don't ever stray from your love of bikes. 

Rohloff Speedhub Review Part 2

I’ve now owned a Speedhub for 6 years. That makes it time for some additional information. I feel like sharing this stuff as they’re expensive (and worthwhile) investments under the right circumstances, and it’s good to have informed consumers out there.

My initial review is here. The hub had always resided on a Moots YBB 29er, also an enduring piece of equipment.

The positive:
1. 5 years of predictable shifts with virtually zero maintenance. This is on my utilitarian commuter that I ride all winter in Calgary, Alberta. Snow, muck, etc. Drivetrain killing stuff. Sealed cables are fine. Shifts are all fine and perfect. If it’s super cold (less than -30C, the oil sludges, and shifts are slow. The standard oil is down to -15C or so practically. It’s quite light. I’ve used detergent free motorcycle synthetic oil half half with their oil to widen temperature range and increase service interval. The standard stuff would freeze and pool at the bottom, and would only get on the gears (so it felt) part way into my commute.
2. Maintenance: I’m on a second chain. I’ve tried to do oil changes yearly (partly I play with oil viscosity and type).
3. Shifting feel/performance: there’s a mild lag. Some people don’t like this. It doesn’t click like modern 10 speed drivetrains of any make. But the lag is like a quarter pedal stroke that I soften up in force, which likely isn’t even necessary. I don’t stop the rotation, I don’t coast… just soften up the force for a fraction. It has never has bothered me.
4. Shifting while stopped is convenient, albeit not necessary as most bikes in the world prove.
5. Wheel hasn’t needed work, and it’s a reasonably light rim (Stans’ Arch). Even spoke tension/geometry. I had worried that the level of unsprung weight vs. a standard hub would be challenging to the wheel overall.

The less than ideal:
1. Braking: maybe my paper seal is done, maybe it’s my oil experiments, maybe it’s otherwise, but I semi frequently need to burn my rotor to get oil residue off which takes braking to a zilch until I rectify it. This is the only real problem I’ve had of consequence.
2. Slider system: seems to loosen up a bit more than I expected. Not that bad though. And not Rohloff’s fault.
3. Yeah it’s heavy. Especially in the 2013 world of carbon frames, superlight DT hubs, etc. You feel the weight when the bike spins up, that’s mass that needs to be accelerated. I actually believe this thing could “easily” be a pound lighter, if not more. Just not commercially viable… it’d be a very niche item at the price to support that design, test and manufacture effort.

1. Simple weight saving – attach it with different method than giant nuts. Light DT RWS style thru axle makes a lot of sense.
2. Gearing mechanism – tough to opine on me finding weight savings here, but it’d be nice. Weight and cost are the only thing holding this back from mass appeal. That’s a lot of dead weight to have tensioned in the center of a rim.

Mooto X YBB weight, potential build weight

I’ve been asked how a (front) rigid 29er Mooto X YBB comes out to 22lbs as equipped, (without the saddlebag of course just for clarity) and what room for improvement there is… it seems that this is mostly from people considering the Mooto X YBB. I’m not sure if there’s an RSL version of it, but that’d be fantastic.
  • Frame: Note this has S&S couplers, and therefore straight gauge front tubes, and the slider dropouts. For simplicity, I’m going to say that adds a pound. It’s probably a bit over that. My tube as chainstay protector isn’t there to hold the fully housed rear cable in place (this frame has no cable stops on that side as it was originally a Rohloff bike), so take off say 150g for a tube.
  • Saddle/post: ~400g as pictured with a Specialized Toupe at 180g. If you’re ultra keen, you could trim that back a bit with a carbon post and lighter saddle. I don’t choose to, part for looks, part for comfort.
  • Stem: I don’t have the stat, but it’s above average weight relative to aluminum or carbon ones. I like the uniform ti look.
  • Bar/grips/brakes: you can go lighter than XTR brakes but why... the power and quality are great, bar is a Bontrager carbon bar of reasonable weight, and I did Ergon grips which you could trim back according to preference.
  • Fork: it’s light (565g). I have a Reba too. Lefty would be the lightweight way of doing suspension which would probably be my next pick.
  • BB/cranks/pedals: if you’re doing 1x whatever, one of the spiderless bling rings on a SRAM carbon crankset or a Cannondale one is going to probably make nearly a half pound disappear off this version.  I've got old chromoly eggbeaters on there which there's functionally lighter options on.  The chain guide isn't necessary so far, those Shadow derailleurs eliminate chain slap.  I'm not a huge SRAM fan, but the 1x11 would seem to be an entirely functional concept with this.
  • Wheels and tires: no budget constraints would have an Enve XC wheelset, and right now one of the tires is a “snakeskin” version of the Racing Ralph, one is the non-Snakeskin tubeless ready (70g diffference). 
A careful, luxe budget for a new build should have one of these at at or under 20lbs w/o front suspension, probably possible to do at or under 21 with a Lefty. IMHO, that’d be a beautiful, long lasting ride… just not worth the incremental cost for me over having this setup mostly out of parts I had.

Now here's the general truism that's dawned on me last few days.  The grand theoretical and pointless question - if I could have only one mountain bike... this would be it.  I have a stiffer one and a plusher one, but this can do everything.  It does so timelessly, without pivot lubing or squeaks, with enough comfort, that this is it.  De-minimus maintenance, clean look, two bottle cages instead of some mega-complex suspension, suspension that works year round (typical shocks aren't really good to put miles on in particularly cold weather as seals don't seal as well, then they lose air, bottom out and break).

Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Day 3 of 3 last bit of riding before Andalucia

Weather, fatigue, and lack of packing thus far meant more logistics and less riding today.  That’s fine.  I got 45 minutes of quality sub threshold in after cleaning the garage, packing bikes, and packing gear.

1. Evoc bike travel bags fit road wheels with tires, but barely, barely fit 29er wheels (same wheel size, larger tire).  This took “persuasion” of the case to let them in.
2. I’ve packed snacks for the week.  Why are gels all such bland flavours?  Do these brands not recognize there’s more than generic “berry”, vanilla, etc.  What about guacamole?  Balsamic reduction?  Margarita?  Denver sandwich?  Buffalo hotwings flavour?  Tiramisu?  Seriously, I can think of a hundred delicious flavours that are entirely warranted by their deliciousness, but haven’t made headway vs. the generics.  I want to buy a 5 gallon jug of Gu “just plain” and start doing my own mixing.
3. Iberia airlines strike isn’t doing my travel plans well.  I suppose I’ll get out mostly unscathed in the grand scheme.  What this has done so far had me pay for a hotel I won’t use/can’t refund (they refused a refund, so I told them I would use it to spite them, so they have 0% chance of re-selling the room), a modified travel itinerary that has me spending more time in train stations and possibly with rental cars to achieve the destination.  I’m sure it’ll all work out.  But there’s only one pocket it all comes out of…

Bicycles and family

This little graphic came to me on an email thread.  I’m currently at perfection!