Saturday, October 25, 2014

Coffeeneuring Ride 3: Cafe Grumpy

Ride 3: October 19 / Cafe Grumpy / 16.2 miles / Coffee Black x2

Saturday was taken up by the Far Hills Hunt in New Jersey, so, obviously, I was betting on ponies (and winning) as opposed to doing a ride. 

Good thing that Sunday comes right after Saturday.  It was nice and cold out (just over 50F), but it was sunny and knowing my lazy, lazy ways, if I fell behind in the challenge I would never catch up. 

Where to today?  Brooklyn.  (Gasp.)

You see, I may have mentioned my laziness.  I am perfectly content to ride somewhere on Manhattan, and make it home again.  For that reason, and others, I rarely make it to Brooklyn.  What Others? The first time I tried to go, we were going to the Brooklyn Brewery, the L train wasn't running, so it took about 2 hours to get there and involved complicated and out of the way bus transfers.  For the record, I don't need to waste two hours of my time trying to get to Brooklyn.  Not that I have anything better to do, but that was just annoying.  The second time I went to Brooklyn my bocce team, "House Party," got HOUSED at the end of season tournament and were eliminated in the 1st round.  Also, did you know you have to go over bridges to get there?  Or through tunnels?  Or use a BOAT???  It's just a daunting prospect. 

Reluctantly, I decided to broaden my horizons, picked out a spot based on it's awesome name, and fired it up:  Cafe Grumpy.
It was colder than the last two weekends.  I was initially regretting my layering choices.  Fortunately, I'm not in very good shape, so by the time I got out of Central Park I was working hard enough to keep myself warm.  The park was full of people (Sunday) so my average speed through there would not be impressive on the Strava boards.  Do I care?  I do not.

Across on 59th St, which was better than the last time I did it when I actually got forced off the road by a car right in front of a Traffic Cop and she told me that I had to be more that.  Then, onto the Queensboro Bridge.  The Queensboro Bridge is a pretty cool bridge, all-in-all.  There is a picture of my bike on it below, but if you don't know it, watch The Dark Knight Rises and it's the bridge that Robin and all those orphans on the bus are on when they think the bomb is going off near the end.  Anyhow, it's a sweet bridge, with a good bike lane.  The last time I went over it I was also scared silly because it was in a deluge/lightning storm and the Flash/Bang time was <1s; I was soaked to the bone, and amped up. This time over the bridge was much more pleasant.  I even took a picture for you.  I would NOT have stopped for ANYTHING last time.

Yeah, I know.  She's facing the wrong way.  Sorry about that.

So, over the bridge, over Roosevelt Island, and into Queens.  I have never been to Queens, except for Laguardia and Mets Games.  That's all I have to say about that.  I used Queens for her access to Brooklyn.  It won't be the last time, either.  I got confused right before the Pulaski Bridge (Queens/Brooklyn connector), and it turns out you actually ride on the sidewalk.  Huh.  They are planning improvements, don't you worry.

Obligatory Pulaski Bridge shot.

After that, Brooklyn.  Seemed nice.  Too nice.  Anyhow, just a few minutes later I arrived at Cafe Grumpy.

I love this place.  It's on a quiet corner and you'd walk right by it if you didn't know it was there.  Also, look at the shingle!  They also have a shockingly simple menu.  There aren't Pumpkin Spice Lattes, or anything ridiculous like that.  So, I had some Coffee Black.
A well-balanced Coffee Black.
The coffee was delicious.  It also came in this sweet Bodum glass cup, and someday, I will have a set of these things.  The coffee was so good, the sun warm, and the corner this shop was on so beautiful and quiet, that I had two cups.  This place is definitely a winner.

After this...I got a bit distracted.  There is a place nearby called Peter Pan Donuts.  I don't remember who told me about them, but I love me a good donut.  So, I rode the 4 blocks from Cafe Grumpy to Peter Pan, and had two bowties and a powdered jelly-filled donut.  I didn't take any pictures, because NO ONE needs to see me scarfing down donuts.  After that, the Fat Kid was happy.

Broncos had a Sunday Night game, but fantasy tracking and heckling is a must, so I set my sights on heading to Standings.  Bonus round for me: from where I was it only took me one bridge to get back even though I took two bridges to get there.  That doesn't make sense, mathematically, but I couldn't argue.  So, obligatory Williamsburg Bridge shot!
I got the direction of travel right this time. 
It's also, possibly, the only Drive-Side shot you'll ever get out of me.
To Standings!!!  The early games were interesting, Fantasy Football worked out well.  Around 4 I hopped back on 'er and headed home.  The map below has the whole ride, but you get the idea.

 Up Third Avenue, and I did so well this time avoiding Midtown, right up until I didn't.  This route (mistake) also took me right by Rockefeller Plaza...I'm an idiot.  Avoid Midtown. 

Ride 3: Check...and best ride yet

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