One of the first summers I lived in Iowa, people started talking about RAGBRAI this and RAGBRAI that. Whawhat? Now I am proud to say that I can tell you that RAGBRAI is the (Des Moines) Register’s Annual Great Bike Ride Across Iowa. And this year, I actually got to see the great…..hmmm, how to describe it???? Well, how about I just show you some pictures! It’s not a race, just lots and lots of bike geeks and friends and family riding and camping across 400 some miles of the great state of Iowa. Maybe some day I’ll be up to riding at least one segment of the great bike ride!
And here is our favorite RAGBRAI protector keeping everyone safe!
It’s a full moon tonight, but as it has been storming off and on since about 4pm, I doubt whether it will be visible. That makes me extra glad that I got some photos last night. I’ve been wondering if I’ll be able to see full moons from my new apartment balcony, and sure enough, the answer is “yes”.
According to Wikipedia, Somerset is a semi-new-urbanist development in Ames. Not sure why the “semi” got put in there. You can go here to read about New Urbanism if you are so inclined, but it has to do with “promoting walkable, neighborhood-based development as an alternative to sprawl” according to the Congress for new Urbanism. Personally, I think of Somerset as another mixed-use development in Ames, similar to West Towne. I go to Somerset to work out at the gym (I know, I know, not as often as I SHOULD!) and I LOVE their pool there. Many Ames-ites also love The Cafe, a cozy restaurant that features a good variety of locally grown, in-season foods. The last time I went to swim, I was surprised to see a large garden beside The Cafe and behind the gym. This new development in Somerset remains a mystery to me…whose garden??? Whoever the owner, I have to say I am IMPRESSED! We’ve had way more rain than usual around here and the most experienced farmers and gardeners are behind schedule, but this garden looks like it was willed into the ground by a pro! I’ll keep you up to date as the summer progresses!
We were up above the timber line here, about 12,000 feet, where the alpine flowers are like little fairies. I love the tininess of it compared to the enormity of the mountains, and of course the views take your breath away!
It’s been a few years since I’ve been with Steven to visit his family in Denver. It was really nice to spend some time with his two sisters, their families and his mom in the mile high city. The views around Denver are awesome and being July, I totally appreciated the low humidity combined with moderate temperatures! We ate lots of good food, went to used book stores and found some gems, took a carriage ride on the 16th street mall in downtown Denver and went up to Boulder and Rocky Mountain National Park one day.
Oh, and by the way, I discovered I like pugs and Charlie, the chow/sharpai mix, is the softest thing you ever touched in your life…softer than baby even! Needless to say, I DO like dogs (and cats)!