Wednesday, May 20, 2009

I'm a bad influence!

Uncle Ken - a new foldie convert

Our Wed cycle group is growing! Today we had another pastor joined us, together with Alastair, Rod, Ken and myself. Colin is Assoc Pastor of Riverton Baptist and it was a joy to have him ride with us. He used to run the marathons and is an avid long distance hiker as well. He and his family just climbed Kilimanjaro in Africa so it was literally a ride in the park for this six footer.


Colin - head & shoulders above us!

I also learned that Ken has bought a brand new foldie. With it, he is no longer restricted to train timings and have for these few months, appreciated the advantages of what the origami small wheeled bike offered.

Foldie bike yakking, as always... pic courtesy of Colin

Thus, he took the plunge and got himself an entry level one. He hopes that his wife will ride it as well since it looks so unintimidating.

I'm not sure what it is as I have not seen it upfront yet but it does appear very interesting with a rear suspension and a real value for $ proposition. Ken loves it especially riding through Mandurah city centre where the small wheels make for sharper handling, whizzing pass the quaint cafes and shops with effortless ease.

Somebody stop me, I think I'm a bad influence! I hope his wife still welcomes me to their house.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Brompton Clergy

My dear friend, Alastair

Roadie Mom with trailer - way to go!

Life is short!
Teach us to realise the brevity of life, so that we may grow in wisdom
Psalm 90:12

Full size vs Folder size

It was great to have Alastair, Senior Pastor of my church come along for our usual Wed morning ride. He hails from Scotland and still speaks with a distinct Scot accent despite being here in Australia for nearly 40 years.

He took the British Brompton and came away very impressed that such a small folded package actually rode quite well. The Jaguar of folders could keep up with the other bigger bikes with no issue and did the 20km round trip with surprising ease.

"Well I never..."

Seems like many clergymen around the world ride Bromptons. Thinking Aloud Blog is by an Anglican bishop in Scotland who is also a Brompton rider and is quite interesting read. There is even a mention of a lady bishop with her Brompton too.

Despite a rather sore bottom, Alastair is game to come again with us next Wednesday. We are honoured! Fresh air, morning sun, moderate exercise and great company are certainly nourishing food for the soul.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Touring on my Tikit - now possible!

Pics borrowed from Vik's Blog

While being here downunder in Perth is great, I've developed an itch to tour Asia again. I have missed my Bike Friday tikit tremendously (O why did I leave it in Singapore?) and wondered if its possible to take her for an extended tour across Borneo this Oct. The plan is to ride from Kota Kinabalu to Sandakan. Scratching this itch with me is Dr Mike Khaw, a fatherly GP and a passionate foldy enthusiasist.

I was very glad to read Vik's positive experience of his twin pannier front touring rack on his tikit and contacted Bike Friday's ever enthusiastic evangelist Lynette Chiang to get one. Recently, I got this email from Nicole that got me dancing... Those folks at BF are truly a pleasure to deal with.

Dear Alvin, I just got word that your tikit rack shipped last week!We sent it to your address in Singapore - via US international global priority mail.
Thank you again for your enthusiasm for Bike Friday - we really appreciate helping us share the joy of little wheels!
Cheers, Nicole Tiffany

This touring rack takes 2 Ortliebs easy and expands its mission as an Urban Assault Weapon to a competent Touring Foldy just like that. Stay tune to see how the city tikit takes on the mountains and jungles of Borneo, home of the Orang Utans.

Pic from Sydney Morning Herald

Friday, May 8, 2009

Mandurah for morning tea

Mandurah lies about 80km south of Perth. It’s a renown coastal small town famous for canal homes, crabbing, dolphins, beaches and fish & chips. No wonder many have moved there to enjoy all that Mandurah offers. With the new train connection taking only 50mins to Perth, real estate prices there have gone through the roof.

Our ride buddy Ken is one such person who opted for the Mandurah lifestyle. He moved there a couple of years ago to enjoy the enviable lifestyle. Ken knows the ins and outs of the area and led us down south to Dawesville Cut through one of the most scenic bike paths I have ever ridden.
It was one of those glorious fall days with balmy breezes and not too much sun. A cool 15c also ensured that it was perfect bike weather. We had to ride through some bridges and the café strip before reaching the paths that took us south. Though pretty flattish most times, rolling hills began once we hit the coast and that was pretty challenging.

Our morning tea stop 24km later was on a wooden jetty along the Peel Inlet. Just us, a few sea gulls and masses of water sparkling from the bright sun rays . Tranquility and sereneness enveloped our souls as we munched on choc chip muffins and hot tea. Add in warm fellowship, could this be the perfect morning tea spot in the world?