Like a tsunami, the weekend hurled and catapulted me head over heels. Now the waters of fun have receded and I am wandering aimlessly about on the moist and decimated landscape.

I had Friday off from work, a paid holiday. As a result, I teamed up with my friend Sherry and we carpooled to New Glarus WI, with our bikes, butt early in the AM to join a social bike ride with the Wisconsin Bicycling Meetup group. This ride was actually a three day event, with different legs each day. Some people lodged in New Glarus to participate in all the legs, but since New Glarus (NG) is only 30 minutes from my house and discretionary funds are limited, it was a no brainer to sleep in my own bed and drive to the event in the morning.

Friday’s bike ride took us through the rolling hills around NG, passing through Albany WI, where the group dined at the Sugar River General Store. The Sugar River meanders through the region and Albany straddles it. It’s a starting point for tubing down the river, a pastime of the local youth. I ate a roast beef wrap, after which Sherry and I split an “extreme brownie sundae” that was so extreme we could not finish it (though we made fair progress).

The bike route was mainly on roads, but Sherry and I decided to take the Sugar River Bike Trail for our return trip from Albany to NG. After completing the bike ride for the day, we loaded our bikes on the bike rack on my Prius and drove up the hill to the New Glarus Brewery. Deborah met us there and we sat outside in the nice weather as we enjoyed some of the beer brewed there. Eventually, we made our way back to downtown NG and stopped in at the Glarner Stube Restaurant. We decided not to eat there though and eventually we left to return home to Madison. In the late afternoon, we grilled out at my house and a few people stopped by. Deborah’s dachshund, Maddie, chased and mauled a rabbit in my yard, which was traumatic for all, except murderous Maddie. Dachshunds are instinctually compelled to chase and kill rodents. The rabbit probably did not survive the attack, as evidenced by the hind leg and large quantity of blood spatter it left behind on my back patio. Insult was added to injury when the other dogs (several were there) decided to lick up the residual rabbit blood. Enough on that gory topic…

On Saturday, Sherry and I returned once again to NG for Leg 2 of the bike ride. This day’s route was much hillier and Sherry and I did the shortest available route, which was 24 miles. It felt a lot longer because of all the brutal hills. Another lady named Kathy rode that route too and when we finished the grueling ride, we reposed at Sugar River Pizza with her and split an extra large chicken Alfredo pizza three ways. I did not think we would finish the entire pizza, but we did. The ride really took a lot out of us and we needed to replenish. We didn’t stick around NG much longer after that, but returned to Madison.

Deborah’s family was celebrating her dad’s birthday on Saturday, so I went to her parents’ house for an afternoon meal, followed by some boating around Lake Mendota on Deborah’s dad’s boat. We made a stop at the Memorial Union Terrace for ice cream, and then they gave me a brief tour of some of the lake side mansions on the north side of the lake. I would never care to be that rich.

Sherry and I didn’t do the Sunday leg of the NG ride, because Sherry had a prior commitment. Instead, Deborah and I rode bikes from my house to Riley WI, along the relatively flat “rails to trails” Military Ridge Bike Trail, where we stopped in at the Riley Tap for their pancake breakfast. This was Deborah’s first long bike ride. Ever. We took it at a medium pace and she did great. On the return trip, we stopped at the Tuvalu Coffee Shoppe in Verona WI for some iced tea/coffee beverages. For the rest of Sunday, we kind of just milled about and took a late afternoon power nap before heading to the Nitty Gritty Restaurant for a late dinner.

All told, a fulfilling weekend. Now I am back at work and it is a lull compared with the fantastic pace of the weekend’s fun. I will probably have a band practice or two this week, but the next gigs I have are not until July 16-18 (two shows with Baby Rocket and one with Rita Witter Band). In other news, my dog Foster is getting his teeth cleaned at the vet next week.

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