Monday, May 27, 2013

I am so f-ing glad I don't have a yard.

Folks at work this week talking about their three day weekend were saying things like, "I'll finally get a chance to catch up on my yard work."  I remember those times.  As a near suburban home owner I too had a yard and sacrificed one, if not two, nights a week.  Never again.  For those that find this time meditative, good on ya, but it ain't my bag.  Would much rather take in a movie at Real Art Ways, go for a hike, head to the museum, volunteer somewhere, go for a bike ride, well - you see there are a lot of things that seem more fun (for me) than cutting the grass or yanking out weeds.  And I totally don't dig the guilt trip, keeping up with the neighbors crap.  Might as well grow a huge yard sized garden rather than grass, at least you'd get some tasty organic veggies for the labor.

Bike Trailer Movers.  Raining all damn day.
Since I've long escaped the enslaving bonds of lawncare, I was able to help Ken K continue his gradual move into his new digs.  We didn't get to use a pulley and ladder to wedge stuff into his second story window, as it was too rainy for that to be even marginally safe.  Instead we loaded up bike trailers and ferried stuff the three blocks from his old place to the new, freshly painted one.  Ken was using the nearly dead coffin trailer, and I hooked an extra kid trailer in tandem with my standard flatbed.  The tandem handled remarkably well.  Ken rewarded me with a huge Salmon fillet for my trouble, a fractional share of the 40 lbs that he had picked up that morning at the restaurant supply warehouse in the South Meadows.  That's a lot of fish!

Creepy Graffiti in Stafford Springs 
Saturday I decided at the last minute to ride up to northeastern CT to test out my new tent with an overnight trip.  The destination was Bigelow Hollow State Park, and more exactly Breakneck Pond.  On the DEEP website map of the park there was a tent symbol although the info for the park makes no mention of camping.  My guess was that there were some under publicized primitive sites around the pond, and I was right.  I didn't get to check it out, but based on the signage in the park there is even a 3 walled shelter on the East side of the pond.  My approach to the park was from the north via Mashapaug Road, which turns into Breakneck Rd, which turns into a washed out, rocky quad track that was quite interesting.  Those that love their rims or are smarter about cracking their skull (far away from cell service) might want to stick to the southern approach from Bigelow Hollow Road.

Hat Trick.  Tent, bike, and fire.
The camping was amazing.  Memorial Day is usually to total cluster fuck at State Park campgrounds.  Everyone and their loud drunk brother decides to take out the RV or popup trailer.  At Breakneck Pond I was totally alone.  No cell service, a book, a bottle of wine.  A beaver, peeved that I was poaching his pond shore, postured with tail slaps as he swam by.  It's amazing what a mile and a half of hiking into a primitive site does to thin the hordes.  Awaking to the myriad birds at 5:30AM I hiked a bit of the loop path south of the campground.  Totally worth staying two nights next time.  Lots of hiking opportunities.  A hook and line could bring in dinner.
The ride back was through some of the best dirt roads that CT has to offer.  South of the park is a large parcel of forest owned by Yale.  I was on dirt roads from Bigelow all the way to Westford.  I also spent some time on Route 89, which for a numbered state route is a surprisingly good ride.  Meeting up a friend for lunch in Willimantic at the Thread City Diner was the calorie boost I needed to make it back to Hartford via the Hop River Trail and East Coast Greenway.  A stop in East Hartford at a friend's Memorial Day BBQ rounded out the day.   At no point this weekend was I stressed about what my neighbors thought about my lawn.

Awoke to a swiftly rolling fog.
Oh yeah.  There is an Alley Cat, the Hartford Hellraiser, coming to Hartford on June 22nd.  Get your fixie bikes ready, or any bike for that matter.  Perhaps I'll ride a three speed just to spite the hipster element and keep myself from riding irresponsibly.  Should be a good time.
Raising the Dead

1 comment:

Tony C said...

Just in case someone thought my comment about "everyone and their loud drunk brother" was judgmental and disrespectful of rednecks, I do claim redneck heritage and upbringing. I have been the "loud drunk brother" at a state campsite with a popup camper. I consider this more of a reflection, and meditation on self than an insult against a large segment of the US population.