Chinook Landing - In the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies - CycleBlaze

January 24, 2019

Chinook Landing

Financial advisor

I start the morning with a few leisurely hours over coffee and an almond croissant at Lovejoy Bakers, filling in the time until my morning’s appointment.  Today I’m stepping into my good brother role for awhile by heading over to my sister’s home to go over her budget with her.  On the way there I stop by the storage unit to pick up a tie so I can look the part of a financial advisor and inspire confidence that I know what I’m talking about.  I’m a bit sad when I go there to see that I’ve lost my bright Jerry Garcia tie, which apparently landed at Goodwill last spring in the Great Liquidation.  The one I pick out is still suitably loud though, and goes well with my T-shirt and newly dry cleaned and patched Pendleton.

The budget review is an exercise we go through about twice a year, dating back to when Elizabeth moved down to Portland about five years ago.  Don’t tell her, but the review is a bit of a sham.  Elizabeth is very disciplined and much more responsible than me.  She actually has a budget, and keeps to it religiously.  She doesn’t really need me to tell her that she’s right on track, but she likes the reassurance.  The real point of these meetings I think is to consider whether she has enough resources and reserves so that she can plan another tour of Europe in the coming year.

My answer to this question is always the same, and prescripted.  Of course she has the resources, and of course she should plan on a tour if that’s what she wants to do.  At our age if not now, when?  With that question comfortably put to rest for the year she pulls out her Road Scholar catalog and we start discussing some of the attractive possibilities.  Puglia in the spring?  Catalonia in the fall?  So many enticing options.

Some shadows, Lovejoy Bakers
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Elizabeth meets with her financial advisor. Not sure why it’s so foggy - blame her iphone.
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Bruce LellmanThe fogginess is perfect. I've always viewed financial advisors this way. But I've never seen one wear a tie with a tee shirt. I like it.
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4 months ago
Jen GrumbyDefinitely the look of a trustworthy financial advisor!
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4 months ago

It’s about 42 miles

Rachael and I at times tussle a bit on our day rides together.  She’s out for a workout, and more is always better.  She’s almost always driven to go a bit further than I am.  There is often a bit of tension as we near the halfway point.  Should we turn back now, or go just one more mile?  I’m sure that I’m in better condition than I would be on my own because she goads me to go just that extra bit further.

For whatever reason, 42 miles seems like exactly the right length of ride for Rachael.  Today she manipulates me a bit by making a game of it - come up with an itinerary that is as close to the magic number as possible.  She announces this game and its rules (fine to be over, but it has to round up to at least 42 miles) after we’re about fifteen miles into a ride along the Columbia, approaching the Glenn Jackson Bridge.  If I’d known in advance I’d have planned out a route of the right length, but hearing of it now is a bit of a challenge.  Where should we turn around, and what route should we take on the way home?

I’m not sure enough of distances that I can put this all together mentally, especially after being away from these roads for a half year.  I decide though that we should bike out as far as Chinook Landing (where Rachael can use the facilities while I look around for something camera worthy).  That puts us at about 18 miles when we turn around, so I need to add in about six miles extra on the way back.

I do pretty well.  We come back by way of Vanport, on a road that I’ve only ridden once before but going the other direction.  Coming from the north end I’m not even sure it’s the same road or positive it goes through when we turn off to it.  It’s a great biking road though, blocked off from cars - and quiet today, except for the explosive cacophony of hundreds of geese suddenly taking wing.

When we get back to town it’s apparent that we’ll be short if we just head directly home over the Broadway Bridge.  Doing a quick mental calculation, I decide that we’ll be almost on the money if we continue south to the Morrison Bridge and then double back. This has the added plus that the access to the bridge is a tight, steep corkscrew ramp.  I’m confident that this will trap Rachael, who isn’t as sure of herself on tight turns.  She’ll end up having to dismount and walk up the ramp, which will give me a few moments to pull out the camera for a quick bridge shot.  The plan works to perfection - I get my shot, and we roll in at 42.1 miles.  Not perfect, but close enough.

On the Columbia, approaching the Glenn Jackson Bridge
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At Chinook Landing, one of Lewis and Clark’s encampment sites.
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I like this short bit of off-road riding at Chinook Landing, following this little creek. A short greenway before we merge back onto the busy Columbia Boulevard.
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At Vanport
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The afternoon Amtrak crosses the Steel Bridge
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Looking south toward the Hawthorne Bridge
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On the Morrison Bridge. About time she worked her way up here!
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Characters

Rachael and I are still chipping away at the big Next Tour Decision.  When we last left you, we were struggling with what the next criteria should be with further narrowing down the decision space.  One constraint we haven’t shared with you yet is that this is a milestone year for Rachael, and so she gets final say on the route.  We won’t say what that milestone is, but we can remind you that her current age is a prime number.  So she’s not turning forty, for example.

So, we ceded the next rule to her.  Food being a major motivator for both of us, she decides that she prefers to be able to read the menu - or at least be able to sound it out.  The Roman alphabet (eg, Roman), Greek (Ελλάδα), Macedonian (македонски) and the like are fine, because we can sound them out and translate.  Any of the oriental languages with their seemingly infinitely long character sets are too much though.  with our old, ossified brains, how could we ever hope to know that 意大利面条 and 麺類 are just pasta?

So, as much as I’d like to take Bruce up on his suggestion that we bike from Calcutta to Hanoi, Asia is out for this trip.  Rachael’s fault, not mine.

Also, after recently reading of the US citizen arrested by Russia as a spy after incriminating evidence was planted on them, we’re X-ing out politically questionable destinations where we might be arrested or taken hostage.  Who wants to have their blog suddenly ended by sitting around in a dank cell somewhere without internet service?

So, we’re down to this.  Definite progress.  Now what, Rachael?

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Steve Miller/GrampiesLet's see, some of the possible prime numbers after 40 are 41, 43, 47, 53, 59, 61, 67, 71, 73, 79, 83, 89, 97. Hmm, now which one to choose. You say her current age is a prime number and that this year is a milestone. The only possible conclusion is that this year she will reach either 60, 80, or 90 years of age! I think I might drop the last two guesses, though I expect that at those points she will still insist on 42 mile day rides.
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4 months ago
Scott AndersonTo Steve Miller/GrampiesYow! First time! You northerners are so bright. She’ll be glad to hear that you discounted the two higher alternatives.
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4 months ago
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Suzanne GibsonI have the impression you two haven't done a lot of cycling in France aside from the Med coast, or am I wrong? There are so many fascinating landscapes inland and small roads, Brittany's coast is wonderful, too. You could do a great zigzag through France.
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4 months ago
Scott AndersonTo Suzanne GibsonDefinite possibility. We love France! A tour that includes a region of France is always near the top of the candidate list for the next tour. We’re losing count now, but if my log is accurate last autumn’s crossing was the eleventh time we’ve biked there. We’ve never been to Brittany or Normandy, but other than that we’ve toured through most of its regions. There’s so much there that we could pretty happily visit France every year. We’re thinking hard about a tour from Brittany to Salzburg through Burgundy, a region we haven’t seen since our first European tour in 1993. We’re way overdue for a return visit.
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4 months ago