This trip is about as different as you can get from the last one. We’re packing the family into the Subie and heading to Minneapolis for spring break. Well, not the entire family – the Giant is not coming. This does not make me happy. But, after a week of riding, I really can’t complain. My last trip was about Rule #11, this one is not. This is the third (maybe fourth?) year in a row we have done this same trip, and amazingly we never seem to run out of things to do there.
Minneapolis is about an eight hour drive from Winnipeg (six if I’m driving), and has roughly the same climate. Which, at this time of year, is miserable. However, last year after we returned home something remarkable happened – Bicycling Magazine named Minneapolis America’s #1 Bike City. This changes everything.
I am stoked (yes, stoked) about visiting a couple of bike shops mentioned in the Bicycling article, most notably One on One Bicycle Studio and Angry Catfish. These choices were affirmed by my friend Chris, and are awaiting confirmation from Hal, who apparently lived in Minniapplesauce for a few years and is in the know. Unfortunately, one of the city’s best known and loved bike institutions – Cars R Coffins – just shut down. And by just, I mean yesterday. Shitty.
In the past, I have always kept up something of an exercise routine by running – I found a very nice route along the Mississippi, past Saint Anthony’s Falls and through the warehouse district. But I haven’t really been running much (ok, at all) lately, so I am wary about starting that now. Plus, in a ridiculous twist of fate, after riding almost 1,000 kms in a week without incident, I managed to pinch a nerve in my right hip the other day by sitting on a chair. It doesn’t hurt unless I move a certain way, then it feels like I am being jabbed with a branding iron. So I’m thinking maybe some exercise of the gentler variety might be in order, like maybe some hot yoga at Corepower Yoga and if I’m feeling really good, a spin class or two at The Firm, which hopefully is not nearly as irritating as the website. I have never tried hot yoga and have done little yoga period, so I figure trying it out of town is a great option because if I make a fool of myself I’ll never have to see those people again.
And then of course there’s laps to be done at the Mall of America.
I know, vacations are about rest and relaxation, but if you are like me (and I suspect most of you are), workouts are imperative to your balance, peace of mind and happiness. Especially when travelling with children. If I’m not active, I’m not happy. If I’m not happy, nobody’s happy.
Vacations are also about eating delicious restaurant food, which as you know can play havoc with the system, and also a great way to get fat. Even if you try to be virtuous and order the fish and veggies, you know in the kitchen they are cooking them in a pound of butter to make them taste way better than the same stuff you cook at home. I have been contemplating faking an allergy to dairy, but am afraid I will be served “salmon jerky” at every meal.
Time to pack… we’ll load the car to the point we look like gypsies, make the mandatory stop at Starbucks, and hit the road for the long drive ahead. It may not be Arizona, but at least the seat will be a bit more comfortable.