Friday, November 24, 2006

One Way To Burn Off That Turkey

Mark Vande Kamp and I figured we needed to burn off some of the Thanksgiving calories we'd piled on yesterday and we thought that a ride out to the Olympic Penninsula would probably do the trick. My son Peter was home from college and he decided to join in the fun. Our buddy Jon Muellner lives over in Port Townsend and the plan was to meet up with him somewhere near the Hood Canal Bridge.

So in the wee hours of the morning Peter and I rode from Issaquah to meet Mark in Seattle and catch the 6:20 AM ferry to Bainbridge Island. Peter had been worried that his jacket might be too warm, but en route he informed me that this wasn't a problem. It was 37 degrees when we left home.

The sun was just coming up as Mark, Peter and I rolled across Bainbridge Island and in Poulsbo the thermometer said 32 degrees. "That can't be right" we all agreed and then we noticed the white layer of frost on the roadside leaves. On Big Valley road the temperature seemed to drop a bit more and parts of the road had a rather ominous sheen. As we neared the Hood Canal Bridge, things warmed up a bit.

I got to watch Peter do an impressive bit of bike handling as he hit the edge of a metal plate on the bridge but with something that looked like a cross between a ballet move and muscle spasm he managed to keep the bike upright.

On the road to Port Ludlow we met up with Jon and he suggested a hearty breakfast at the Chimacum Cafe. This proved to be a wise decision. Over breakfast we discussed various weighty world matters and why we all loathe flying because we all hate being without a Leatherman or a Swiss Army knife.

After breakfast Jon headed back to Port Townsend and we rolled back towards home on Beaver Valley Road. Back in Seattle Mark headed for home. Pete was cutting things close on time so he got in touch with the college buddy who was also his ride back to school and they to met up in Factoria. So Peter's ride was little shorter than mine, he only had 106 miles for the day. But considering that he's been busy with school (he's double majoring in physics and chemistry at Eastern Washington University) and has ridden zero miles in the past two years, I was pretty damned impressed.

But that wasn't the most impressive thing Peter did this week. Yesterday morning, when Christine got up early to put the bird in the oven, it was already cooking away. "It's a Thanksgiving miracle!" she reported to me as she came back to bed. No, it was Peter. He made the whole meal and he did a great job. The green beans with bacon and onions were amazing. It seems when Peter's been away at school, he's become quite the chef. "The chicks really dig a guy who can cook," he explained.

This is the time of year when we give thanks. I'm thankful for so many things but mostly I'm thankful for the many fine people who are a part of my life, my family and friends.

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