On Yer Bike

It’s Saturday here and we had quite a day. After cleaning house, I called the business ‘On Yer Bike’ to inquire about hiring a bike for a ride through the vineyards. No problem. They would outfit us. After giving me directions, the Rayman and I headed out for the place and somehow managed to get lost. But we didn’t stay lost too long. Only a little late. Mike, the proprietor, gave us a map, instructions for where to go, which wineries to stop at and a lunch to eat. And off we went.

So, let me jump to the end. Mike knocked on the door of the nice people I had just met and told them he was there to collect me. I had “slipped the collar and gotten away”. This meant that I couldn’t finish the tea that my new NZ friends had just made me. I thanked my new found friends and gave my hostess a hug and jumped in the truck with Mike to head back to his place of business. So…the way I met my new NZ friends is that my legs gave out. And the reason my legs gave out is that I was riding an old tech bike, only 3 gears, we took a wrong turn on the way back, rode an extra mile or so out of our way to get back to the road we should have been on in the first place. In the meantime while being lost, a 45 mph wind came up which we found ourselves riding into and I just hit the wall (not literally, of course) and I announced to Ray that I could not go another mile. Oh, and it was starting to rain. So, Ray yelled against the wind and told me to stop and wait for him and he would ride to the place and get the car and so I immediately turned into a graveled driveway (not the easiest surface to navigate) and made my way to the front door and knocked. A wonderful woman (can’t remember her name, I”ll call her Dorothy) answered and I asked if I could stand out on their porch to wait for my ride and escape the rain. Well, she wouldn’t hear of it. So in I went and met the whole family. Her hubby, Murray, the daughter, the son-in-law and three grandchildren. Dorothy immediately brewed me a cup of tea and insisted that I sit down in the kitchen to wait for my rescue. We had a great time until she saw Mike in his truck driving down the street slowly. Well, what happened was Ray ran into Mike on his way back and he told Mike I had fled into a driveway…and so Mike went out to look for me and there I was having tea. It was great. My new NZ friends were wonderful and they added much joy to my life…because I was really, really tired and cold having gone out biking with a Gap t-shirt and modest fleece top because it started out warmish and comfortable but as we progressed from one winery to the next the clouds were gathering and the weather changed in a nano-second… the wind started blowing and there we were miles away from Mikey’s.

When we reunited, Ray and I, we had to laugh. Before I turned into that driveway, we had visited about 4 wineries, Ray bought 4 bottles of wine and a cool t-shirt, had lunch at one of the wineries, met people that had worked in the wine business in CA, an owner than made his money as a currency trader with UBS, a couple whose son was their winemaker who offered Ryan a job in the spring…I’m telling you, we can’t get over the kiwis. They are fabulous. And you find out how really fabulous they are when you get lost!!


Where we had lunch.

I think it was the fact the road started to climb that led me to question Ray’s map reading abilities. This ride was billed as a flat ride which was really enough for me on my bike. Words were spoken. I threatened to quit. Ray was getting “louder”. Finally we road down a driveway and knocked on a door of an empty house. That is when we decided (with the hill looming) that we must be on the wrong road. No phone to call with, we turned around and headed back. Well, when I told my new NZ friends that I figured we were on the wrong road because of the hill, Murray exclaimed, “What hill”? That is when I explained that my legs were so tired, the wind blowing so fierce that the slight incline looked like Mt. Everest. With that everyone got a giggle.
We came across two democrats grazing today.

So, basically that’s what we did today. It’s now 8:45 p.m. and we are firmly planted in front of a roaring fire with our laundered clothes hanging on a rack next to the stove while we sip wine and eat chocolate and watch the French play the British in the semi-finals of the Rugby World Cup.

I was going to say that Charlie, the cat, was sleeping at my side and then I remember that we did our good deed for the day today. As we were starting out on our bike ride (did I mention it was about 15 miles), I saw a lamb with it’s head caught in the fence. She had mistakenly thought the grass was greener on the other side (of the fence). So. I enlisted Ray to help me extract her from her situation. Easier said that done. Her head would not come out. Ray rode to the house associated with the sheep. No one home. So, I rode to a nearby house and found some people sitting on a patio and I enlisted their help.

When we returned from our ride the sheep was gone. That made me feel good. It’s the little things in life.
C’est moi velo!! (this is my bike)

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