When your spouse is the originator of The Coffeeneuring Challenge, the coffeeneuring season arrives with a flurry of excitement. As many of you know I am the spouse of, and tandem partner with, the inimitable MG, A.K.A. “Coffeeneuse Prime,” Twitter’s own @coffeeneur. I get regular updates on all the interesting coffee places you coffeeneurs seek out, not unlike a front row seat at NASA flight control.
The good news is that I LOVE coffeeneuring. We’ve combined cycling and coffee stops on our randonneuring brevets and touring rides since, like, forever, so I’m all over this one.
In case you haven’t heard of this particular challenge, the objective is simple: ride a bicycle to seven different coffee shops over seven weekends (starting on Oct. 2) for a coffee or other hot drink. But wait, there’s more: document your adventure with a photo and submit the particulars to MG directly or via links to social media.
The distance is fairly easy. One merely has to ride at least two miles round trip. Read all about it at MG’s Chasing Mailboxes blog.
For 2013, my goal has been to do something mildly interesting on every coffeeneuring ride, and try to rack up some long-distance miles (that’s the -euring part for me) in the process.
I’m going to work through my first five coffeeneur trips over the next few days. Here’s the first.
My daughter DF was in D.C. on the weekend of Oct. 5, the day after the opening of the space disaster movie Gravity. This is surely the the best high-concept remake of The Poseidon Adventure yet.
It seemed like an apt connection to coffeeneuring:
1. You leave home to visit a beautiful yet unforgiving environment: the Washington urban grid on a weekend day with distracted tourists and errand-runners.
2. You encounter threatening space junk: Metro buses and drivers making sudden moves while trolling for parking.
3. You undergo a stunning rebirth that arms you with the steely will to get home: the rush to the head and heart brought on by delicious espresso and the great outdoors!
We rode to lunch at The Diner in Adams Morgan before continuing to the historic, single big-screen Uptown Theater in Cleveland Park. The Uptown is simply the best venue in the city to see blockbuster movies, with sumptuous sound, a balcony, and a massive curved screen. DF and I rode the “Lead Sled” Cannondale tandem and MG rode her trusty Rivendell Quickbeam singlespeed bike.
Upon arriving at The Diner, I ducked next door into Tryst next door for my coffeeneuring stop. A self-titled “Coffee house/Bar/Lounge,” Tryst is a cavernous student and college grads-with-laptops-and-scarves hangout and was packed on this warm day. I ordered a triple espresso and took it back to the diner to drink while we awaited our food. It was delicious. They make really good espresso here.
Back on the street we met up with local resident and Friday Coffee Club regular Ryan S., who was finishing his morning bike ride. Here’s a photo to prove it!
The movie was scary and visually amazing, if a little simplistic in the character development department. But good for Sandra Bullock, though, who at age 49 looks not that much different than the young-and-beautiful people in Tryst.
The ride home from Cleveland Park is fun because it is mostly downhill toward our co-op building on the Potomac River in Southwest D.C. We saw our friend Mike’s daughter Claire on her Soma and chatted — that was fun. When you see a Soma Saga ridden by a stylish woman with rack, fenders and a generator light, say hi for us.
Total miles: 13. Total multi-billion dollar Space Shuttle and space stations destroyed: Zero. Mission accomplished.