if this man shows up at your house with pancake batter, let him do his thing- you'll be happy.
We ate, Wyatt continued to be cute,
Caden took off into hyperspace,
and people separated to go on a leisurely road ride or a mountain bike ride. So, we visited the bike shop.
this is actually Jake's garage
Kevin looked at my brakes and it wasn't just the situation I had hoped for where I could just tighten them- they were worn away to nothing. So, I borrowed Tara's old mountain bike, which, needless to say, wasn't quite designed to have me ride it. I had looked for places to ride in this area, and once place that had gotten decent reviews on mtbr.com was Catamount Family Center, which turned out to be literally across the street. I can't fully review here, since half of the place was off limits due to a race, but even though we were looking for a short, not too hard ride just to get out there and get some miles in, I was pretty disappointed, especially considering it cost 6 bucks to ride there (one of the reasons I love mountain biking is that it's usually free). 2 of the 3 places I've ridden in Vermont had enormous grass fields in them, which are pretty, but kind of suck for riding.
Jake, Ben and I eventually ended up in the woods for some decent single track, but it was much too short, way too switchback-y in the way that they just didn't have room for much and tried to make the trail complicated with what they had, and I felt very awkward on Tara's bike. I couldn't really get any speed or flow going. On one hill, I, still not entirely used to having such sensitive brakes, hit them a little too hard and completely exploded. I went full on over the handlebars and landed on my head/face/back on some perfectly placed rocks. I got up feeling like my jaw was messed up, brushed myself off and continued to ride. But, I now was terrified of everything, so I voted to cut the ride short at around 3 or 4 miles. When I got back and showed people where I had dented my helmet, I was immediately met with a "oh yea dude, you need a new helmet." Apparently it had cracked as well. Always wear a helmet, kids. I would find spots of dirt, cuts, and bruises in placed I had no idea I had even hit over the next few days. We had fun though, and we found a downhill section with jumps that Ben was too scared to go off, but we didn't blame him. He did go off one thing though:
It was a nice time, and due to the proximity to home base, I will definitely have to go back here and check out the half we didn't get to see. I'm sure there's some awesome stuff there.
We ate some lunch, chilled on the deck some, and then headed off to go blueberry picking. I don't really like blueberries (and I'm from Maine! I also don't like lobster! The horror!!), so this was not entirely what I wanted to do, but whatever, it was nice out and I was going with the flow. I was surprised with this soft serve though, which was really weird and good- chocolate and blueberry, which was actually made with mixing vanilla soft serve and blueberries right from the field. Soft serve cones in Vermont are called CREAMIES. Yea, I thought it was weird too.
don't let this man near your children
I decided to just focus on helping Tara amass 13 pounds of blueberries, finding the biggest ones I could. You're welcome guys, enjoy your next month of blueberries.
Gina looking her best
This place was pretty rad though- they had kids games, toys and leggos inside, and ping pong, frisbees, and a basketball hoop and 4 balls outside. The hoop was like 7 feet high though, which meant we could dunk. Jake literally swished 4 or 5 of these in a row, one handed with a child in the other arm. Kid has got SKILLS.
look at that follow-through!
Then Wyatt dunked.
he's heating up
And Jake used the beauty of Instagram to even make me look good.
We finished off the trip by going to get pizza at American Flatbread Company in Burlington. I was a bit wary, as everything listed was organic and very hipster-esque. It seemed like it might be a tad too fancy shmancy for me- the pepperoni was listed as "nitrate-free pepperoni." I wasn't even aware that this was a problem. Nearly every pizza had something in it I didn't know or understand, but the organized people just freaked out and ordered 5 large pizzas for 7 people. They were all gone in less than 20 minutes. Needless to say, they were pretty awesome. My favorite was either the mushroom and caramelized onion, or (nitrate-free) pepperoni, green peppers and olives. And so we could explode, we got some brownie sundaes too. Oh, and the pepperoni was fantastic- like, notably, surprisingly fantastic. Maybe people who hate nitrates are on to something...
We left, Shaun took this amazing picture,
and I headed a billion miles home. Solid weekend.
Oh, and I shot some odd footage of Jake from the day before and told him I'd make a movie out of it. I didn't fail you Jake. I now present to you the first Dongus Bologna music video/short film, "Jake Goes to the Beach:"