Saturday, October 22, 2016

A Favorite Route and Catching Up on 33 Years!

I just dodged a bullet. A few days ago I upgraded my 6 year old MacBook Pro's operating system to MacOS Sierra and found that I was no longer able to access the PC side of my Mac through my VMware Fusion. I didn't appreciate how much I use and depend on that side of my laptop for some of my computing until it was gone. I searched the net for solutions but wasn't able to find anything helpful. Fortunately for me I had recently used the Time Machine backup feature on my Mac and was able to revert to where my laptop was as of very recently. Whew! I was somewhat doubtful that I'd be able to retrieve the PC side of my Mac. It was a 3 hour process for the revision to take place and I was sweating it a little but it's all intact.

Last Sunday I rode my bike down to the Minnesota River crossing at Cedar Avenue in Burnsville to check out the new pedestrian/cycling bridge that was recently completed and opened to the public. It's in the place of the old bridge that was used up until the early '80s and was closed to even foot traffic about 15 years ago.

I'll be able to make use of the bridge whenever I'm crossing the river into Bloomington and points beyond. There's also a crossing along the south side of the 494 freeway and that's what I've been using up until now.

It was nice to see the bridge but I found a change down there that was of much more cause for excitement for me. First, a big thank you to Excel Energy and the city of Burnsville! The paved trail and the improvements spoken of in the linked article have now been completed and I can once again ride from Cedar Ave on what used to be Black Dog road (and still is but to a lesser degree) to the bike path that runs along the east side of 35W. This is huge for me!

There was a route I used to take on my bike that I enjoyed more than just about any other -- I even had a name for it: it was my Monday Morning Loop. I named it that because for years it was my preferred route on Monday mornings before working the 2 - 10 shift. I had some variations of the loop but they all involved taking Silver Bell road to the river bottoms and Black Dog road where I'd take that west to 35W and back toward home. It's been since the spring of 2010 that I've been able to do my Monday Morning Loop.

I first learned of the road when I lived less than 2 miles from it in 1985 after moving back from Huron, SD. I was an avid runner then and I logged thousands of miles down along the river there. I once did a ride-along (more than 20 years ago) with Burnsville police officer, Eric Gieseke, (he's the Burnsville chief of police now) and one of the places we patrolled that night was Black Dog road. He mentioned how it was probably the most dangerous place for police to patrol because backup help could be as much as 8 minutes away due to how remote the area is.

Anyway, I'm really happy about being able to ride my Monday Morning Loop again and felt it deserved a big mention here in my blog. Here's a photo I took on a ride in October, 2009. You can contrast it with the photo from this week to the left.

I had a visit last Sunday from a friend from decades ago. I first met Steve early in our FAA careers. Steve retired from Columbus, Ohio tower 5 years ago. We've been connected on Facebook for more years than that but it had been more than 33 years since we'd seen one another. Steve and his wife Penny were in Madison, Wisconsin last Saturday to watch their Ohio Buckeye football team score an overtime win against the Wisconsin Badgers to remain undefeated. Steve and Penny have season tickets to Buckeye games and are ardent supporters. They decided to do a roadtrip to see their team play in Wisconsin and figured that since they were kinda-sorta (4 hours away) in the area they'd stop in to say hi. It was really nice to see Steve again and to meet Penny. We really enjoyed our time with them and hope to be able to return the favor and visit them out east at some point. I only regret not having a photo of us to post here.

Here's some video from last Sunday's ride and yes, the guy in the truck at 2:37 was being a dick!


No comments: