Thursday, September 12, 2013

Boulder is Flooding

We have water in our two bedrooms, nothing too terrible, but we'll probably have to get the carpets replaced, there are definitely people way worse off than us. I did have the most terrifying drive to work ever. It started out with just rain and some sand and rocks on Highway 36. Then I turned onto mcaslin blvd which turns into dillon road. At the light where you can get onto northwest parkway, there were a bunch of cop cars and a fire truck pulled up while I was at the red light. As we drove around, I saw a bridge washed out on the business access road and a car was in the river ( which is usually a dry ditch) with its headlights still on, and I freaked out. I called Caley and and started crying etc. I made it a couple more miles before getting 3 flash flood warnings on my phone and running in to standing water in a low spot across I 25 before finally calling it quits and deciding I didn't want to die today. It actually took me quite a long time to get home because I avoided the car in the river intersection, then south boulder road was closed near our house. I finally, made it home on baseline, which is now closed and probably should have been when I was driving through the 2-3 inches of moving water on the road... Holy crap I don't want to do this again tomorrow. Why the hell our school district isn't canceling classes is beyond me. It's still raining. Caley and I took a little walk during one of the lulls in the rain's what we saw, our little creek...

Monday, July 1, 2013

French TV Has it Figured Out!

You heard me right, French TV knows what's up.  They have dedicated a solid 3 or so hours on Saturday nights to showing us YouTube clip after YouTube clip after Vimeo clip etc. etc. ad naseum.

I may be guilty of having watched about 2 hours of this...anyone who has ever fallen down the rabbit hole of YouTube will know why.  In this format, you don't even have to expend the energy needed to select what to watch next, it just keeps coming!

Monday, June 17, 2013

Mountain Cows are LOUD!

A little video for you:

Caley and I saw these awesome cows on a truly fairy tale magical ride that led us up and up and up into a mountain valley that only the cows and the humans that milk them ever go.

The road pretty much disintegrated before ending in dirt and signs that told hikers how long until the next pass or landmark etc.

On the way back we passed a marker that was in memory of a young frenchman who was brutally "massacred" by the Germans.  You see those everywhere here.  It makes "The War" seem very present in everyones daily lives.  I wonder how people feel about Germany basically holding the purse strings of the EU at the moment.

Here are some more pics!

Friday, June 14, 2013

Riding in Italy Courtesy of Bianchi

Caley's job is super awesome.

The beginning part of this week we spent in grand splendor at a gorgeous hotel in the hills surrounding Lake Iseo in northern Italy.

Caley had to attend informational presentations about the 2014 line of Bianchi bikes while Ramsay and I went for a ride and then luxuriated in our tower rooms.  Lunch, dinner, coffee breaks, bubbly rosé, cheese, cured meats, the CEO of Bianchi, gelato, crisp white sheets, windows opening to rolling hills of grapes, I could go on and on.

I rode with all the journos on the second day we were there and had some fun beating up on the guys who don't get to ride very much :)  I also discovered after uploading our ride to strava, that I was only about 6 minutes off the QOM (queen of the mountain) which is held by Carmen Small!  She is the daughter of my very best ski coach from childhood, and is currently kicking some serious ass in races all over.  I'll have to get in touch with her to ask what she was doing in Italy in March :)

Last night we had dinner with Caitlyn Vestal again, Zack was at a work thing, and they had moved to a house out in the country.  It was so beautiful!! We brought steaks, quail eggs, beer, and bocce.  Great fun was had out in the yard before the thunder rolled in with sheets of rain following close behind.  I'm super sad they are leaving tomorrow!!!  We have discussed plans to move into houses across the street from each other in the French countryside.

Ok, here are some pics for your viewing pleasure!

Monday, June 10, 2013

Summer Continues to Tease

I'm not convinced it will ever get warm in the Alpes this year.  Today dawned with more rain on top of yesterdays downpours.  Caley and Ramsay kicked me out of the house yesterday afternoon so they could clean in time for someone to come look at the apartment to rent it in September (thank you sincerely boys).  So I got in a great run! I started out hiking up the hill behind our house to warm up, and as soon as I got onto the Col de Leschaux road I started running.  At one point I considered trying to go all the way up and call someone to come get me, but then it started to sprinkle....and then downpour!  I hid under some trees for about 10 minutes or so, but finally just gave up and headed back down the hill.  The clouds were actually a bit thinner and I ran out of the main part of the storm.  Ended up being about 5 miles in about an hour.  I can understand why Caley is frustrated by the speed of running...

The past few days we've been trying to get on our bikes when the weather allows and Caley has been covering the Dauphine.  I went with him down to the area near Alpe D'Huez on Saturday, fully intending to ride the climb, but we ended up napping in the car and coming straight home :)  It was an early morning, the race was supposed to start at 9am!  Usually they don't get rolling until at least 2pm or so.  I think some of the riders were protesting...they hadn't even left the busses at about 5 till 9.

Someday last week, I can't even remember the day, Ramsay and I rode over Col du Leschaux to meet up with the race as it came through the little town of Cluse.  We sort of raced each other.  Let's just say a lot of trash talking was had....apparently Ramsay needs more of a warm up or something like that (excuses!!)  We sat at our favorite patisserie and had coffees and ate sandwiches while we waiting for the racers.  Here's when they finally came through:

Caley rode his bike home and I drove sag for him.  Of course, he didn't just go home, had to make a detour to the top of Le Semnoz, the local gigantic climb.  Ramsay and I had fun blasting the stereo in the car for him and of course doing a little heckling out the window.  Caley is freaking fast on the bike, in case you weren't aware.  I never get to really see how fast when we ride together because he rides at a speed that I can keep up with... There are some pics in the gallery at the bottom of the page from that ride.

Let's see...we spent a lovely evening in downtown Annecy last week, we hadn't been down there for awhile.  Of course we ran into awesome live jazz on the canal...

Other than that we've been eating delicious food, watching a lot of the French Open on tv, trying to find internet, etc.  I finally dug into some school stuff and I'm spending a lot of time thinking about the classroom flipping stuff, now to actually DO IT!

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Hanging Out and the Dauphine

We've definitely been packing in the fun the past few days; as it should be!

Saturday we had the Vestals over for dinner, funny how we have to come half way around  the world to find time to hang out with our friends :)  Zack works for Mavic, and Caitlyn got some vacation time away so they're here for about two weeks. Dinner was awesome, they are so much fun to hang out with!  In fact, we're going over to their place tonight.  I hope we get to do some riding with them as well, Caitlyn is super fast at the moment, which is not unusual in the slightest...she just got 4th in some big mtn bike race in Colorado.  Hopefully they won't be too annoyed at waiting for me.

The Dauphine started this week as well.  We went to the first stage in Champery Switzerland.  It was fun to see a grand tour that isn't as insane as the Tour.  Some video clips for your enjoyment:

Today we caught up with the time trial, apparently Contador had a super bad race....I wasn't really paying attention :)  Caley was a little disappointed, apparently there weren't really any new bikes being debuted. He thought there would be more new stuff to get pictures of.  We did get to hang out with Simon and Tom from some British cycling company, don't remember the name.  We had them over for dinner last night as well.  It's so fun to know people in different countries, I invited them back for when the Tour passes through the area, we'll have to track down more chairs...

Other than that, we've been reading, riding, writing, bocce playing, cooking, sightseeing, and generally enjoying life!

Here are some pics, I will try to caption them as the internet allows..:)

Thursday, May 30, 2013

First Week Back in Euroland!!

We're back!!!!! And it is so cold and rainy!!!

I landed in Milan last Monday, Caley and Ramsay picked me up in the still Giro be-stickered  (akin to bedazzled) Renault Megane wagon.  That car has some serious pick up and some serious room.  We had to fit my bike box, two small rollies, and a backpack (and a purse) into the car.  They already had about two bags each, plus Caley's Mosaic.  So yeah, the person in the back seat was nice and cozy. You could definitely tell that at least two, and at times three, bros had been living out of that car for about a month....

First stop was the Mediterranean  We dipped our toes, scarfed some crappy tourist trap pizza, then checked in to a sweet Residensia hotel.  We had a stove, dishwasher, clothes washer, table chairs and couch in the room.  Perfect for Caley who has been eating out for a month.  A quick trip to the store produced a chicken for roasting, potatoes, tomatoes, fresh salad and some insanely cheap Campari (according to Ramsay).  We feasted and conversed late into the night.

Second day dawned with misty rain (oops, we left the laundry on the balcony).  We headed west along the coast, then cut up into Provence headed for Le Coquillade.  Seriously fancy.  Wine tasting in the caves followed by  dinner in a Michelin starred restaurant accompanied by the best and brightest of the cycling tech industry folks topped off an incredible 24 hours in Europe.

On Wednesday Caley headed off for a ride on the new BMC, the entire reason we were there in the first place.  Ramsay and I took off to explore the vineyards, ruining our shoes tramping around in the woods and the mud, but the views and the fresh air were definitely worth it.  By the time Caley was doen riding and eating lunch with the surprise "guest of honor" (Cadel Evans...) we were ready to head North to Annecy.  The drive was pretty painless, just long.  After checking in to the hotel, we headed in to one of our favorite restaurants in downtown Annecy, le Belle Excuse.  Salads as big as your head! Bigger in fact!

And today! We moved in to our house!!!!!!!  It is incredible!!!!!!!!  I didn't take pictures in time to add them to this blog post, but I will update with some soon!

I seriously can't wait to get settled and start riding every day.  It is still very early spring here, the mountains still have fresh snow on them from last nights epic rain, and it is chilly!  We are in the Alps, so I guess it makes sense...Next week the weather is supposed to be in the mid 60's though, so hopefully we'll get out for some good rides.

Caley has the Dauphine this week, not sure if Ramsay and I will go with him to the race, but he gets to ride the train to the start, and come home to sleep in his own bed each night, that is a treat for sure.