Rainy day walkabout - Winterlude 2020 - CycleBlaze

January 24, 2021

Rainy day walkabout

Today didn’t begin with a walkabout in mind, for myself at least.  This is the first of three straight cold, windy, and rainy days; and Rachael’s plan was to take a hike over to Tumamoc Hill, armed with optimism and a new umbrella.

The view north today from Tumamoc Hill.
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My plan though is to take a bike ride, maybe scoring 42 miles and another riding day for the team.  The forecast entices us with about a four hour dry window, though the window’s boundaries keep shifting every time we look at the forecast again.  My thought is to bike southeast out Julian Wash until enthusiasm lags or environmental conditions discourage, and then ride the tailwind back home.

Rachael steps out the door on her hike, and not long after I pull out the bike and prepare to depart.  Not so fast buster, says my totally flat rear tire.  It’s had a slow leak for perhaps three weeks now, and I’ve just pumped it up anew each day since it first showed up, planning to repair it on a rainy day.

Here’s that rainy day, and it’s finally time to repair 2021 flat no.2. At this rate, we’ll be seeing 15 flats this year. Not great, but maybe things will improve when we leave the desert.
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Bruce LellmanI know it's all about speed and distance for you guys but I'm a big believer in Schwalbe Marathon Plus tires. Three rugged trips in S.E. Asia over countless pieces of glass and nails and other stuff that would take out most tires and we have never had a flat. I say this because I simply hate fixing flat tires.
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1 month ago
Scott AndersonTo Bruce LellmanIt’s not really about speed or distance. We don’t really bike that fast any more, or rack up long miles. For me, it’s a tradeoff of pain avoidances. It’s a pain changing flats, and it’s a pain carrying extra rolling resistance. The tires we have feel like the right compromise, for us.

On average, I think we might get a flat about every three months. We’re in thorn country now, and our tires are getting worn to boot. We’ll start over with a new set before our next ‘real’ tour.
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1 month ago

That rainy day is here.  I’ll repair it later in the afternoon, when it’s coming down in earnest and even hailing a bit; but not now or there won’t be time to get out before the rains arrive.  I improvise, and decide to take a walk through the inner city looking for murals.  I found a few.

As a side note, murals are going up at a breathtaking rate here in town, supported by the Tucson Murals Project.  Several of the ones shown below are new this year. 

Found in the Lost Barrio.
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We especially appreciate this mural at the corner of Park and Broadway. It’s our landmark for our turn to enter the Lost Barrio.
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On Park Avenue. I’m primarily on the lookout for murals today, but other interesting sightings are worth pausing for also.
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On the wall of the Sky Bar, on 4th Avenue: a crested saguaro lady, by Rock Martinez. Does this look like either of the crested saguaros we saw in the National park last week? I know each is unique, but really.
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Star Wars Cantina, by Jenna Tomasello; on the wall of Tall Boys Restaurant on 4th Avenue.
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On Sixth Street, on the wall of Reproductions, Inc. by Danny Martin.
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In the Westerns section.
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On Stone Avenue, the Sahara Apartments Mural by Joe Pagac and Katherine Joyce.
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A section of the Sahara Apartments Mural. This one gets my vote for being so utterly delightful.
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Jen GrumbyTen purple creatures on bikes!
None wearing heels with spikes
They ride past the low moon
The ape playing bassoon
And the elephant shouting, "Oh, Yikes!"
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1 month ago
Jen GrumbyThis is a social commentary on all the women wearing ridiculously high heels at the presidential inauguration.

Thankfully Laura Bush and Maisy Biden dared to show some intelligence with their footwear choices.
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1 month ago
We brake for ALL roadrunners. Another fanciful Joe Pagac creation, on Stone Avenue.
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Ron SuchanekI think that's my favorite. It would make a great t shirt.
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2 weeks ago
The left half of Joe Pagac’s giant Borderlands mural, covering the north wall of Borderlands Brewery.
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On the wall of The Little One Restaurant on Stone Avenue, by Jessica Gonzales.
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Tucson is a quite attractive place even without its murals.
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A new mural by Danny Martin, on the wall of the Old Pueblo Parking Garage, on Congress Street.
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The Sacred Heart of Tucson mural, on Pennington Street; by Lex Gjurasic.
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Blue Quail and Oranges, on Scott Avenue next to one of our favorite restaurants here, 47 Scott; by Isaac Caruso. He painted it in six days, sleeping on the lift so he could paint as late in the day as possible.
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On Congress Street: Desert Soul, by LA artist El Mac. This one is new, added to the cityscape just last year.
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Another new mural this year, also on Congress Street on the wall of the Rialto Theater. By local artist Robbie Lee Harris.
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And one more new one on the same theme, on the wall of the Congress Hotel. By ASU student Camilla Ibarra.
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The view west , from the Rattlesnake Bridge. Such a different sky today! To the north, between breaks in the clouds we can see snow on the Santa Catalina Range.
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In the belly of the beast.
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Back in the Lost Barrio: the lowly house finch. I was surprised that their color varies with diet. A carotenoid-rich diet brings out the best in them.
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Bruce LellmanThis is the nicest bunch of murals I've ever seen!
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1 month ago
Scott AndersonTo Bruce LellmanIt’s pretty impressive alright. I really like their color, diversity and imaginativeness.
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1 month ago