Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Today's sky report

I may not be posting too much on this site, but I did put in a couple at I figure this is a good place to write about events in the seacoast area. Enjoy.

Monday, September 19, 2005

Today's sky report

It's just not the same at Panera anymore. It used to be fun to go in there, make up names, and wait for the bread DJ to call you out. You only had to know how to spell the name you made up (see my previous post:

Today, hoping to have more fake name fun, I went back. This time, I planned to give a name that was easy to spell, yet which still might garner some kind of reaction. Waiting in line with my lunch partner, it was agreed that she would give a guy's name and I'd use a girl's name. Imagine my surprise and disappointment when I learned that they no longer depend upon names to match you to your repast. They now have the vibrating, light-flashing coasters popularized by chain restaurants that refuse to take reservations (the Outback, for example). So, I dutifully placed my order, at the same time struggling with my disappointment over the new and not-so-improved paging system. After she punched everything in, I was delighted to hear her ask for a name. Rather than ask her about the redundancy, I simply said "Sue". She never missed a beat as she punched it in. No eye contact, no quizzical look, no barely suppressed giggle. Nothing. All the fun of fake names is gone. I debated for a minute leaving my order on the counter for a bit, hoping that they would call me out, but hunger took first place over humor, and I picked up my order shortly after the lights flashed.

Incidentally, my lunch partner chickened out on giving a man's name.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Today's sky report

Reports of last night's riotous Blog 'n Brew were circulating in carpool this morning. After hearing the tales of mirth and merriment, I can't believe I selected basketball over beer. I'm sorry to have missed another opportunity to hang with such a fine group of literati (blogerati?). However, I still intend to hand out a few awards, as has been the tradition:

Seacoast Perspective: The Glad You Finally Made It Award
LNotes: The Welcome Back Blogger Award
You Who?: The Do Free Chicken Fingers Match the High Epicurian Standards of My Blog? Award
Contagious: The Anything Worth Doing is Worth Doing to An Excess Big Second Toe Award
Raising Two Kids: The Can't Wait to See Your Revenge Award
Granite Rants: The Why Would Anyone Go to South Dakota on Vacation? Award
Mrs. Rants: The Still No Blog Award

4 Kids, Mom, and Dad: The Shortest Time to an Engagement Award
Kreblog: The Simply the Best for Organizing These B'nBs Award
Carpoolguy: The You Better Show Next Time Or You're Out Award

Hope I didn't miss anyone, but I'm sure you'll let me know. See y'all in November, I hope.

Monday, September 12, 2005

Today's sky report

In a departure from my usual rants or wry observations, I thought I'd publish a ride report today.  My buddy called me up on Friday to run an errand for him.  The errand required a trip over to Lake Nubanusit in Nelson, NH, and the forecast for the weekend was beautiful, so of course I said "yes".  I left Sunday morning early on DBZ (my BMW motorcycle).  While the sun had been up for a while, it was probably 45 degrees or less at my house when I departed.  Several layers under my riding suit (the 'stitch) kept me warm, along with the grip heaters on the bike and my winter gloves.  I decided to pound the highways on the way over, taking 101 west until I reached Dublin and then turning north to the lake.  For most of the ride, the sun warmed by back and made the early temperatures bearable.  The air was still and I didn't get involved with any road crazies, which is rare when you're riding. 

In Harrisville (north of Dublin), I pulled into the local general store for a coffee and a bite.  This little general store has been under several owners in the 25 plus years that I have been venturing over to the lake.  The current ownership incarnation has the emphasis on sandwiches and other deli products, but they also had coffee and various rolls and breads.  I chose a wonderful blueberry scone to go with the so-so coffee, and sat outside at a table on the porch while I sipped the coffee.  The one downside to riding a motorcycle for those of us who are used to driving around with a beverage is that you can't do that on a bike, especially when you wear a full-face helmet.  You could also look at it as an upside, because you get a chance to stop and relax when you want something to eat or drink.

Leaving Harrisville, the road to the lake soon turns to dirt.  In that area of the state, the dirt roads are even smoother than the heaved-up paved roads.  My back, just a couple weeks from the visit to the emergency room (see Today's sky report for August 29), appreciated things smoothing out. 

The lake was serene and clear.  I wish that my errand required a trip on the water and I wished that I had more time to spend there, but before long, I was back on the bike headed east.  I resolved to return without touching Route 101.  So, here are the towns you hit in avoidance:  Nelson, Harrisville, Hancock, Greenfield, Francestown, New Boston, Goffstown, Manchester, Hooksett, Candia, Raymond, Epping, Brentwood, Exeter.  Some of the roads were awful - heaved and bumpy.  Some of the roads were wonderful, recently paved and beautifully curved.  For most of the duration of this route, you get an appreciation of just how beautiful this state can be.  Fields, mountains, swamps, horse farms, forests, rivers, lakes, small towns, city views, people in churches, a road race, a drag race, all there for your viewing.  All of it on a 75 mile trip.  Hope my buddy has another errand when the leaves get more colored.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Today's sky report

Remember when you were a kid, and you used to play shadow tag? In this variation, you never actually had to touch another individual to say "you're it", you merely had to stomp on their shadow. Of course, this game is easier in the morning or evening when the shadows are longer, than at noon when it's probably easier to reach over and touch someone than to stomp underneath them with your feet.

Anyway, last Friday I was riding westbound on my two wheeled Beemer (affectionately known as Das Beak Zwei or DBZ) rather early to meet some folks for breakfast. In fact, the sun was just beginning to crest the seacoast horizon. As I rolled up and down the small hills of Rt 101, my shadow would appear and disappear in front of me. With the low angle of the sun, the shadow appeared huge at times, stretching out to 30 or 40 feet. Depending upon my direction, it might be on the right or left or out in front of me. Once, when it was on my left, I got passed by a car that drove over my shadow head. Made me think of shadow tag.