Sunday, June 17, 2012

Adventure 24- Car Free on Fathers Day

Ghost town??
What a better way to celebrate Fathers day for Natalie and I. Today just so happened to be Car-Free day in the Comox Valley. Cumberland and Courtenay celebrate this occasion, and this year is the second annual for the festivities. I was unable to attend last year so I was quite excited to participate this time. And even better that Natalie could ride with me.
Ripping through those cones
It has already been a good bikey weekend for us. I did my Epic Ride on Friday, then cycled around Courtenay and Comox on Saturday with the skinny tires, and an evening ride with Natalie around the old Number 5 mine site. Today promised to be mellow, just two blocks of Dunsmuir were blocked off. Dunsmuir being the main street in Cumberland. I had originally proposed going snow shoeing today, but being involved with a car-free day was lower impact and involved less planning. Plus the weather was looking ominous. With gusty wind and cloud mixed with darker cloud, the mountain could have been miserable. It could also have been great. Impossible to tell. I am happy with our decision and so is Natalie. 
Nice soaps
We pedaled onto Dunsmuir at almost one o'clock. It was pretty quiet, aside from a pair setting up the bike rodeo and some chalk artists. The intersection of Dunsmuir and Third were to be a palette for whom ever wished to create a picture. We coasted up and down the street a few times. That is such a great feeling to have that much road to play on with a bike and be unafraid of motor vehicles. The rodeo was completed so Natalie and I spend a good portion of time doing loops of the slalom cones and the figure 8. We had a great time cheering each other on. Soon Natalie spotted some friends from school and they raced up the street to check out the soap factory. The proprietor creates brilliant soap in many shapes and scents, including apple pies, cupcakes, apples and flowers. Beautiful, and she had also had a bubble maker operating above her establishment. What a child draw that was. Every kid in the area flocked to the bubbles.
Artist in resident
We zig-zagged our way back down the street to give a hand at the chalk drawing. Natalie began drawing bikes and I drew her one to show how I would do it. However I soon realized that the bike decorating booth was open. Off we went to see how her bike could be beautified. Natalie's mom had shown up to take some pictures and the two of them went to work creating a masterpiece of ribbon, streamers and a playing card in the spokes. I busied myself catching things that were flying off the table because of the wind. Natalie was thrilled for this art project. We had to wait another half an hour for the decorated bike parade so we rushed home so Dusty could join her for the event. Once all settled down the kids cruised down the block and back in front of the parents and onlookers. It was "kidical mass".  And lucky her, she won a prize for her bike decorating. How cool! It was a gift certificate for the Wandering Moose. After a couple of pictures with the other kids we make a hasty retreat for the Moose for gelato. Excellent. We sat in the rare glimpse of the sun and people watched for a little while and indulged on the tasty treat. 
Thanks Mom!
Natalie went back out and drew some more and rode around the figure 8 again. I had a peaceful few minutes to see the world go by and reflect. I thought that the turn out was kind of low for our town, which prides itself on its bike culture. On the other hand, children and families made up the majority of the attendees. Plus many just came and went. I was pretty low key in socializing today, but the community of people all chatting and visiting in a central area was really awesome to see. Maybe I am just oblivious to the social gatherings of people, it seems like this kind of stuff doesn't happen in public often. Most of the parents all know each other from the elementary school and their kids are friends, so I am probably out of the loop. Anyways, I was still happy to see it and made the "cynical one" a little less so. We returned home and had a game of crib before dinner to cap a really nice afternoon of biking and being outside. Find Adventure.
My bike. How could you tell?

1 comment:

  1. What a nice way to spend your Father's Day! We're glad you had such a good family time. Congrats Natalie on your prize for bike decorating! How fun :)