Coffeeneuring #7

Date: November 19, 2016

Distance: 3 miles

Drink Description: Drip coffee

Bike Friendly: Yes!

This is it – the final coffeeneuring jaunt of 2016.  Today was easy puttering miles and then a stop at Daily Harvest Bakery in Monroe, LA.  Standard drip coffee, but a delicious egg scramble and cheese danish.

dailyharvest

Coffeeneuring this year was fun!  I rode to a few places I wouldn’t have considered riding to otherwise.  I also roped a few friends into riding with me, which is always a blast.  So, I bid farewell to the challenge, but I suspect that I will continue coffeeneuring.

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Coffeeneuring #5

Date: November 6, 2016

Distance: 6.5 miles

Drink Description: Drip coffee

Bike Friendly: Yes!  Finally!

No riding for me over the past week because I have been really sick.  I’ve been wanting to ride the Vicksburg National Military Park though, so Alice and I headed out there on Sunday.

vnmp2

We started riding, and it didn’t take long for me to realize I was too sick to keep going.  I threw in the towel and sipped drip coffee while Alice finished her ride.  An unintentional coffeeneuring without walls.

vnmp1

I will be back VNMP!

cleanbike
I currently have the cleanest bike in town.

Coffeeneuring trip #4

Date: October 28, 2016

Distance: 2 miles

Drink Description: Cafe au Lait with a side of beignets – a Louisiana tradition!

Bike Friendly: Nope

I took this particular morning to engage in coffeeneuring with a side of early voting.  Nothing like fulfilling your civic duties to work up a coffee thirst!

votebike
Best sticker!

Originally I had planned to make this trip from my house, but I had an unexpected delay, so I opted to ride from the gym, since I needed to swim afterwards anyway.  I rode to the West Monroe Farmer’s Market and prepared to vote, then caffienate.

The early voting line was suprisingly long.  I waited approximately 45 minutes before I could get coffee.  But the coffee was worth the wait!  Caster and Chicory is one of our local food trucks, and they specialize in beignets and Cafe au Lait.  Voting is strenuous and I had worked up an appetite, so this was all quite good.

beignets
I’m about to get fat from riding my bike…

The downside of the two delays came when I tried to ride back to the gym – traffic was thick, and sadly people are not used to seeing bikes in the area around the Farmer’s Market (which makes no sense to me), so it was a nail biter getting back.  The second downside of the delays came when I saw that I was out of time to swim before I had to get to work.  At least there was a bike ride and coffee!

Coffeeneuring trip #3

Date: October 27, 2016

Distance: 5 miles

Drink Description: Delicious Heritage Roast with Chicory and Cream

Bike Friendly: Nope

Today was a fun pre-work trip for coffee and biscuits!

Alice and I found out that there would be a popup biscuit shop at RoeLa Roasters today.  RoeLa is the local coffee roaster and occasional coffee shop.  Recently, our local awesome chef Cory Behr has been setting up there in the mornings to serve delicious stuffed cat head biscuits, and we just couldn’t resist.

roela

In case you are wondering about the Southern peculiarity, the term cat head biscuit refers to a biscuit that is larger than a cat’s head.  Typically a cat head biscuit is also more delicious than a standard biscuit, and using the term can cause a Southerner’s eyes to roll back in ecstasy at imagining such delights.  These biscuits did not disappoint!  They were also stuffed with smoked pork loin, and there were various jams that you could put on the stuffed biscuit sammich.  I chose Satsuma Fig, and the biscuit tasted like Thanksgiving dinner.  Such wow.

cathead
Yum coffee and biscuits!

The coffee was just as good.  Well brewed with a touch of chicory to make it taste like Louisiana.  The weather was great and the ride was easy and fun.

mtb

 

Coffeeneuring Trip #2

Date: October 22, 2016

Mileage: 69.8 miles (No, I did not take the option to lap the parking lot for .15 miles)

Drink description: Surprisingly excellent drip coffee

Bike Friendly: Nope

So for this particular ride, I was invited to join a group in Shreveport for a birthday ride.  One of the members was turning 70 and wanted to ride 70 miles in honor of that milestone.  The route looked neat, and it just looked like a blast overall, so off I headed to Shreveport.

The plan was to meet up with a cyclist friend who lived on the way, and then we would travel together to the destination.  When I got there we loaded up bikes and prepared to set out, except that his truck wouldn’t start.  We putzed around a bit, decided it was the battery, and I offered to jump off the battery from my vehicle.  I pulled up and started up, cables were connected, and the truck still wouldn’t start.

At this point I turned around to see my own battery smoking.

We launched into action like some Keystone Kops, yanking battery cables and watching sparks and smoke fly all over.  Thank goodness that removing the cables made my truck stop smoking.  Time was running short, so we unloaded his truck, loaded up mine, pushed the non-functioning truck out of the driveway, and headed out.  As we drove away in my (no longer smoking) truck, I opined that I would sure like to see his wife’s face when she sees the truck pushed out into the yard and him not around.

Blessedly, that turned out to be the only mechanical of the day.  We arrived in good time, and the cycling fun began!

keychain
The birthday boy gave me a rocking keychain!

It was a gorgeous day.  I had to break out the cold weather gear for the first time since last winter, and it was comfortably cool for the first half of the ride, and warm enough to shed the cold gear for the second half.

missionarymarker
Nifty historic plantation house on the Louisiana side of the state line

In the second half of the ride, we made it all the way to Arkansas.  It was fun to traverse two states in one ride.

arkansas
The “county” sign signals that you made it into Arkansas

And what ride is complete without coffee at the end?  We stopped at the Main Street Restaurant at the end of the ride for food and fellowship.  I ordered a burger and a plain black coffee, and both were superb.  How could they not be – they were flavored with earned appetite and good company.

mscoffee
Great place!

Coffeeneuring Trip #1

Date: October 8, 2016

Mileage: 20.9 miles

Drink description: Slightly substandard drip coffee

Bike Friendly: Nope

October 7 kicked off coffeeneuring season!  Check out all the rules here.

October 7 also kicked off my 20th high school reunion!  I saw people that I haven’t seen in at least 20 years, and a few for even longer.  My younger cousins played in the football game, food was eaten, many laughs were shared, and a good time was enjoyed by all.

4friends
I squint when I laugh.

So since I’m at the old hometown, why not go for a ride and coffeeneur it?  One of my classmates joined me on the ride, which made it even better.  We rode around the Cane River National Historical Area. That includes Melrose Plantation, home of Clementine Hunter; Oakland Plantation; and St Augustine Church.  It’s relatively new to me to see it all as a National Park (this happened after I graduated), but I’m so glad that the area is being cared for and restored.  Lots of history in this very old region.

staugbike
St Augustine Church

We rode 20 easy miles, talked and laughed, cursed the incessant headwind that seemed to blow in our face no matter which direction we rode, and enjoyed a cup of coffee at Oakland Plantation afterwards.  It was a coffee shop without walls that embraced the spirit of coffeeneuring.

oaklandbike
Oakland Plantation Visitor Center with coffee

No trip to Natchitoches is complete without a meat pie, so we refueled at Lasyone’s.  More coffee was consumed, but since we drove, it was outside the coffeeneuring rules.  It was the perfect end to a reunion trip though!

meatpie
Everything fried!  Yum yum!