You have logged onto the Fugawi Bike Club of Massachusetts Web site.
The Fugawi Bike Club is dedicated to riding, visiting various sites of interest along the way, and enjoying good company and possibly good food and wine.
Note bene: Click on the underlined words to see photos or linked Web sites.
Trips in 2008
Boston, MA, August 31
Trip details here.
Kennebunk-Biddeford Pool, ME, July 30
Trip details here.
South Shore, MA, June 29
Fugawi Comics here.
Trip details here.
Trips in 2007
Burlington, Vermont, October 26-28
Fugawi Comics here.
Trip details here.
Ipswich, August 18
Fugawi Comics II here.
Trip details here.
Boston-by-Bike, July 15
The first edition of "Fugawi Comics" here.
Trip details here.
There was something fishy about this ride .....
Cape Ann, June 16
Our intrepid band of nine bikers gathered for the first ride of the season on the median strip of Rt. 127--not unusual---from there we careened through tourist traffic--like always--bullied our way onto a closed off private road--why not--and lunched al fresco next to Motif #1 in Rockport. An open art studio tour was part of our itinerary.
So far so good. then Philip had to insist we visit his favorite kayak launching site, a wall of granite with a notch to allow fishing boats and other small craft to enter. We pedaled onto the granite pier (as usual, the usual Fugawi wiped out). Just as we arrived a fishing boat unloaded it’s catch of 8 to 10 huge bluefish. Two of our elders proceeded to become very friendly with the fishermen, took photos and before anyone could stop them, they were presented with about five pounds of filleted bluefish in a plastic bag. “How to get them home?”, they pondered. If there is a will, there is a way! A photo records the ingenious solution to this problem.
Now the ride continued on to Annisquam, then returning to the starting point. Dinner reservation had been made at the Sea Gull, on the Annisquam River. With fish safely stored in the car trunk, we headed in to eat. There, right in front of us, on the wall, a sign which said: "Bring your fresh caught fish and we will cook it for you!" The Fugawi gods smiled on us again!! Six Fugawis had the best bluefish ever, for $4.95 a meal. Some abstained and were sorry they had.
All in all, a great ride.
- photos by Muthe and Martin
Click here for a slideshow.
Click here for ride details.
Trips in 2006
The Grand Finale
Acadia, October 13-15
The Fugawis are a diverse group, brought together by their love for biking, touring and, mostly, eating and drinking!
Many rides in the past have brought out the diverse interests and opinions of our members. This ride was no exception. Our Saturday lunch was in Bass Harbor. The differences in climatology became very evident upon arriving. It was sunny but cool when we arrived. Most of us (the hardy ones) decided to eat on the patio with lovely views of the harbor and boats. The grumpy old men opted for an inside table with no views and with strange odors.
A competitive nature and love of speed is also in evidence. The downhill speed record of 32.5 held until the last hill of the last day but was broken by John, unofficially clocked at 35 mph, coasting!
At this time of year the political animal in us takes on a new emphasis. Everyone controlled themselves and we (almost) didn't talk politics the whole weekend; every time we caught ourselves heading in that direction, we quickly switched to a non-controversial topic. . . like religion instead. (It's true!)
As this was the wrap-up and final ride for 2006, here are some of the deep thoughts by Muthe with help from other serious bikers:
To resist the frigidity of old age, one must combine the body, the mind, and the heart. And to keep these in parallel vigor one must exercise, study, and love. - Alan Bleasdale - true for all Fugawis, except they don't all read the same newspapers or books. Otherwise, why do we get into political fights?
You can't help getting older, but you don't have to get old. - George Burns- that's why Fugawis believe in biking.
If you worried about falling off the bike, you'd never get on. - Lance Armstrong and Fred
What's really scary is crashing in a race. - Lance Armstrong, John, and Fred
You learn that your tank is only so big, and if you just keep burning you'll run out of fuel. - Lance Armstrong, John, Martin, Muthe (Muthe- don't drink and ride a bike!!!)
Stay away from highways on Friday, the 13th, otherwise it may cost you dearly.
An island whose name is pronounced the same as the final dish at dinner had to be delicious. - Mark and Linda
Looking out from the top of Cadillac Mountain (reached in a car, thankfully) was breathtaking; and the scale of the CCC effort to develop the network of Acadia roads and paths, and the results they achieved were most impressive.
Mt. Desert Island and Acadia Park were as amazing as the books promised and much more impressive in person. The sunny, brisk weather sharpened our senses and each view of the harbors, ocean or mountains seemed to outdo the prior view.
It was a demanding ride but well worth the effort. I love it when we get rewarded for our efforts!!
Anonymous: Heard all too frequently: Finally - a downhill...yeah, but you know what that means - for every downhill there is an .... ugh! Shut up! *#!*!&
Photos by Muthe and Martin:
The Nashua River Valley
Wine Tasting and Comida Portuguêsa
Tiverton - Little Compton, RI, August 19
Gorgeous weather, lovely scenery of well tended farms and quaint houses nestled in gentle hills which roll to the sea. Cows, horses, disgruntled motorists noticing our passing. A wine tasting, real Portuguese food(finally), beer drinking; yada, yada, yada.
for photos of the ride.
Most importantly, right now, before we venture on extended rides in foreign countries without first aid stations nearby, we should revisit the Fugawi rules of the road.
Each year, more than 200,000 adults in the US are treated in emergency departments as a result of bicycle-related injuries. Don't be one of them.
Fugawi Rule #1 of biking: Stay on the bike by grasping the handlebar at all times, except when signaling. This will usually keep the front wheel pointing in the direction of motion. One of our seasoned members failed to heed that rule and went a-- over tea kettle onto very rough pavement after hitting a small pothole. Luckily a part-time nurse was at hand to administer first aid.
Fugawi Rule #2 of biking: Look where you are going. Another one of our most seasoned riders failed to heed this rule a couple of years ago and did so with dire consequences. His flip from bike to pavement resulted in a broken clavicle. We assumed his mistake would be a lesson to all the other Fugawis.
Fugawi Rule #3 of biking: refer to these Web sites:
http://bicyclesafe.com/ (versions in English, French, Spanish, Catalan, Hungarian; no excuses for not reading the article))
Fugawi Rule #4 of biking: Wear bicycling gloves. Bicycling gloves protect your hands from chapping, cold weather, road rash, and even improve your grip on your handlebar.
Fugawi Rule #5 of biking: follow rules #1 through #4.
Click here for ride details.
RETIRED RAMBLERS RULE
Rye-Portsmouth, July 12
It was the Fugawi elders who assembled on Ocean Boulevard in Rye, New Hampshire for a 32 mile bike ride, one that was threatened by overcast skies and very bad weather predictions.
We decided to ride anyway. We cruised alone the beautiful coast of Rye, peered into the mist to try to get a glimpse of the Isle of Shoals and headed towards Portsmouth, stopping at Odiorne State Park (some taking an opportunity to exercise), the famous Wentworth Inn (kick the tires, John), and Ft. Constitution (very historic). It was grey, it was humid, it was foggy but we reached downtown Portsmouth with nary a drop of rain.
We enjoyed lunch and exotic brews at the Portsmouth Brewery. Unfortunately, as we prepared to leave for the return trip, the skies opened up. With no other choice, we set out in the storm. Our first afternoon stop was the Wentworth-Coolidge Mansion (40-room mansion overlooking Little Harbor) and the Coolidge Center for the Arts. Both were very interesting and dry. By the time we were ready to leave, the weather had cleared up a bit and we only had to contend with a steady drizzle. Off we went over hill and dale and through horse farm country. Our 16 mile inland return took us back to our cars just in time, as the heavy rain started again. Those pesky Fugawi rain gods struck again!
After a "drippy" drink on the partially covered patio of Saunders Restaurant on Rye Harbor, we dined in comfort. Great food, great views, all in all, a great ride.
We missed an opportunity to initiate a new rider into the secret rituals of the Fugawis. In his case, I think we can waive the initiation next time. He demonstrated that he already belongs to the tribe. He arrived at the wrong time and at the wrong starting location, spending the remainder of the morning searching in vain for the tribe. We remind the Fugawis - read the instructions. If that doesn't work, follow them.
Click here for a high-resolution map of the ride.
Text by Judy; photos by Muthe and Martin.
Hamilton Ramble, May 6
We had a great turn-out for our first ride of 2006. 16 in all, even a few last minute surprise entries. As always, the weather cooperated and we started out from Hamilton with bright sunny skies. Luckily we had a local rider who guided us through a confusing maze of streets and took us to Prides Corner along lovely back roads.
The aforementioned lovely weather turned cold and grey as we reached Manchester, lunch was consumed in a hurry under threatening skies. Leaving Manchester we stopped and hiked in to Agassiz Rock, a natural formation left over from the Ice Age. From there on the ride was a tour of the North Shore at is's finest, tranquil farms, glimpses of the ocean, rolling hills, shipbuilding sites, and historic houses.
We stopped at Asbury Grove, established in 1959 as a camp meeting ground. the first camp meeting was attended by 15,000 people. It remains the only place in the United States that has continually offered a camp meeting summer program. Living, growing, and sharing as a religious community remains the central theme.
Our route back to our cars was through Bradley Palmer State Park and up and down some significant hills (for a first ride). 12 of the original 16 ended a great ride with good company and good cheer at a local restaurant.
photos from Muthe
Trips in 2005
Martha's Vineyard, October 28-30.
NO BLACK DOGS HERE
- by Judy
It was a plucky band of Fugawis that gathered that morning, refusing to be intimidated by the cold, dull sky and biting temperature. Experienced cyclist as they were, all were ready for what ever the circumstances.
We glided past the cold sea,
We paused to admire the lonely light,
We banded together and disbanded in no organized fashion.
Lunch was long, but good.
A final farewell, and we hurried towards our separate destinations.
Chapaquidddick and Katama.
Cold, hilly and beautiful.
With dinner came the rains, and the umbrellas.
And good wine and good company.
It is the nature of the Fugawi to plan and then ignore all plans.
Sunday was a good example.
Some started towards Gay Head, some towards West Chop.
Some took the direct route, some more devious routes.
Yes, gently rolling hills, but also spectacular views of wild lands and sea.
All in all, you couldn't ask for a more perfect trip!
Ferries that day sailed back to the mainland with groups of Fugawis
waving good-by to a special island.
Kudos to Linda who prepared this wonderful trip and to Steve Perlman, a retired academic (anthropologist, no less, so watch your behavior) and business man and owner
of the Hanover House in Vineyard Haven, for his splendid hospitality. We all recommend his Inn to anyone visiting the Vineyard.
Photos (beware 4.7 Mb !!!!) of the trip (in no particular order) - by Martin, Muthe, John, and Mark; aerial photos taken post-trip by ace photographer Muthe in a plane piloted by Rudy.
Description of the ride.
Nashua River Valley, Saturday, October 1
As the grey, dismal days of winter are upon us, only four of the most enlightened Fugawis can relive the most gorgeous ride (weather-wise) we have had in a long time. Our ride on the Nashua Rail Trail and surrounding countryside took us through beautiful fall forests and gave us views of apple orchards, the rolling countryside, a covered bridge, and an ancient waterfall, dam, and power plant on the Nashua River.
The weather was ideal and we managed to make a final stop for a tour of the Nashoba Valley Winery and enjoy a sampling of their many varieties of wine and spirits. Personal favorites - cranberry-apple wine and the Grappa!
Our final stop was a country inn for dinner and a chance to relax and enjoy the sunset of a perfect fall day.
This is a ride is not to be missed and should be repeated next year.
Photos - by John
Trip Web site
Boston by Bike, Sunday, August 29
Instead of our usual forays into the bucolic countrysides near, and far, from home, 11 brave Fugawis strapped on protective headgear and attacked the urban landscape of Boston. At that time we did not know that Bicycling magazine ranked Boston the absolute worst city for cycling in North America in 1999 (Boston Phoenix Article), in large part for the total lack of respect given bikers by city drivers. Amazingly, there were no incidents of any kind of road rage, maybe the yellow Fugawi jerseys are subliminal stand-ins for Lance?
We assembled at the Harvard-Smithsonian in Cambridge, saddled up and headed for the Charles River pathway. The foul weather promised was nowhere in site (We found one patch) as we cruised towards downtown Boston, admiring the various types of water craft on the river. Dashing wildly across temporary construction ramps, pedaling madly on one way streets the wrong way, intimidating pedestrians on sidewalks, we all managed to arrive unscathed at Faneuil Hall Market for lunch. Then off to the harbor.
Highlights of our afternoon journey included: a ride on the harbor-front pedestrian walk way (bikes allowed?), a quick tour of the South Boston waterfront, including a cruise ship and a large, strange navy vessel at dry dock, and circumnavigating Old Boston Harbor with a stop to admire Fort Independence at Castle Island.
The JFK Library is an impressive building, specially when approached from the harbor side as we did. Some of us took a short tour of the museum, others took a break for refreshments. A slight drizzle convinced us it was time to move on.
Even though our return to Cambridge was fraught with vehicular dangers, we all arrived at Redbones safe and sound. Dinner was very enjoyable, as usual, and no one went away hungry! A short trip through Cambridge brought us back to our cars and the end of a great trip, one of our top 10!
We never did see Whitey Bulger. However, we spotted two wandering Fugawis half way through the trip. They went to the wrong starting point, missing us by a 1/2 mile We always tell the Fugawis, "Read the instructions and if that doesn't work, follow them!".
This participant takes back all the negative things she said about a ride in the urban jungle. Can New York city be next? - Judy, with photos by Muthe, Doug , John, and Martin
Trip Web site
Quebec City, July 24 - 27
Our first international ride was a huge success. Our hardy band of nine arrived in the walled city of Quebec and survived our first test, getting to our hotel. Once there, we were very pleased with the accommodations and the venue (Vieux Quebec) and went off to explore the city and fuel up below in the Basse-Ville for the days to come.
Our first tour was to circumnavigate (44 miles; approx. 500 ft. high) Ile d'Orleans. A grey, drizzly start quickly improved and the island met our expectations. Tiny villages were connected by pleasantly rolling roads, gorgeous views of the river at every turn, neat farms, horses, and stone houses built in a local architectural style slid by. Austere stone churches yielded ornate, golden interiors. We were sure we had traveled to the French countryside!
Our very own Doppelgaenger for Lance Armstrong, Fred, managed to get two flats, that were quickly repaired by his support team.
"How many flat tyres must one man patch,
Before you can call him a man?"
- Ralph Dylan
We viewed birds that were thought to be extinct in Canada and another species being fattened for the table.
At the northern end of the island, halfway through our tour, we climbed a tower that gave us a misty view of the St. Lawrence River, nearby islands, and the Laurentians and Appalachians. Click here for a brief natural history of Quebec province.
The trip culminated in a wine tasting at the local winery and a chocolate tasting at the local chocolaterie. Some of us needed a rest after eating too much chocolate. A splendid view of the Quebec City skyline was afforded from the southern end of the island.
Back at the starting point a fine example of the river traffic was seen.
The following comments about the tour were overheard before part of the group made a mad dash back to Quebec City for beer: "Excellent! Ausgezeichnet! Merveilleux! Three cheers for the team car driver!" The three (Muthe took the photo) remaining little indians visited the spectacular Montmorency Falls (272 ft. high, 98 ft. higher than Niagra Falls) adjacent to the island.
We reassembled in Quebec City and had a fine repast at a charming quebecois bistro on St. Jean.
After a short, but refreshing sleep, we explored a very small part of the Route Verte, the Chemin du Roy (Royal Road), the next day, questioning the description given as "gently rolling hills". We met the mother of all hills and only Lance was able to ride his bike, while the rest pushed their bikes. On another part of the trail, a novel method of descent was found.
Drinks, dinner and a late night stroll around the city capped off the official visit. I think we all wished we had more time to spend in this very international city! With great fortitude and concern for our health, we did forgo the quebecer's main source of sustenance, Poutine (More). How to pronounce poutine: Click here. "VIVE LA POUTINE MADE IN QUÉBEC!!!"
A couple of Fugawis managed a tour of the city the next day. They viewed, among many splendid sights, the changing of the guard and a marching band at la Citadelle, and the Chateau Frontenac, and examined an artillery piece at artillery park,
We heard about the "Construction Holiday" while in the city. Here's the skinny:
A Quebec tradition
The traditional construction holiday was made official in 1970 by a government decree and took effect for the first time in Québec in the summer of 1971.
For more than 30 years, during the last two weeks of July, workers set aside their tools, boots, and helmets for a well-earned period of rest and relaxation. And they are not alone. It is estimated that a quarter of Quebec's active labour workers follow suit and trade their working clothes for swim trunks during the same period each year.
Le Chateau Frontenac history
Fairmont Le Château Frontenac owes its name to a flamboyant French governor called Louis de Buade, Count of Frontenac, who guided the destiny of New France from 1672 to 1698. Frontenac's coat-of-arms can be seen on the outside wall of the entry arch and many other areas within the hotel. History casts a long architectural line: a 300-year-old stone bearing the Cross of Malta emblem is among the interior stones of the hotel's vaulted lobby. The Count of Frontenac was born in Sant-Germain-en-Laye, Winchester's sister city.
- Judy and Martin; photos from Martin, Muthe, and John
Trip Web site
Tiverton - Little Compton, Rhode Island - July 16
Watch this space.
York-Eliot-Kittery, Maine - Wednesday, June 29
Due to predicted inclement weather the tour for Saturday June 18 was postponed until Wednesday, June 29. Thus only retirees and shirkers could attend. The ride was almost too much for one of us and it took gatorade and the invigorating odor of cow manure wafting from a nearby farm to invigorate this rider. The ride took us through beautiful countryside, charming byways, along the rocky shores and tidal estuaries of south coastal Maine and provided views of several historic buildings including the John Hancock Wharf (the John Hancock) and the Rice Library in Kittery. Late in the afternoon, we faced a lightning storm and, fortunately, we could find refuge at the Chauncy Creek Lobster Pier after a frantic dash of one mile in the accompanying rain. A pleading call to Monique brought wine and munchies to sustain us while we waited for the lobsters to cook. After the fine repast, the storm dissipated and we continued our tour to the finish line. The final leg included a view of the famous York "wiggly bridge", said by some to be the world's smallest suspension bridge.
Photos courtesy of Muthe and Martin.
Newport Trek - May 21
What can you say about a ride whose highlights were:
a) watching a national rugby tournament
b) finding yourself on a 4-lane highway, pointed into the wind and realizing the road you wanted to be on was across the highway, over a retaining fence, and down an embankment , across an on-ramp (you're going the wrong way).
Otherwise, the ride was memorable because of the wind-factor and the wimp-factor. Count the number of bikes in this photo, need I say more.
Believe it or not, there was no rain for the whole ride, just a little mist and fog. But a stiff 40-mile an hour wind on the last leg of the trip was a definite challenge. We followed the usual round-the-peninsula route and ended up at the Tennis Hall of Fame. Our wise decision was to eat and drink at lunch, not knowing how long the (relatively) good weather would last. After a long lunch, some of us visited the museum and some of us went to the Newport Boat Show. We rendezvoused for the aforementioned ride back to the cars. See (b) above.
The rain began as we headed our cars back to Massachusetts. Thank you, Fugawi rain-gods!
As for the elusive Lamont, he greeted the first arrivals and remembered our last visit. Don tried to capture him for posterity, the resulting photo here.
- Judy Schmid (photos courtesy of Muthe and Don)
Cape-Ann - April 16
Again, the Fugawi weather gods smiled on us and it was a gorgeous, warm-for-April day on the season's first ride. We started off, all fifteen of us, through Gloucester and headed for Eastern Point. Somewhere along the way, in usual Fugawi fashion, some of us split off and took the road less traveled. It is interesting to note that when a band of bikers arrives on the scene, strangers tend to become very friendly and we have discovered some interesting people this way. At Eastern Point, a man from Mississippi, of all places, learned of our history and has e-mailed us to find out about starting a Fugawi-style club in his area. We continued along the coast past gorgeous views of islands and light houses to the town of Rockport. Our lunch was in the heart of town by the infamous Motif #1. We also happened to be there on the last weekend that Rockport was a dry town. A few days later the town voted to restore alcohol to bars and restaurants after 80 some (not sure how many) years.
After lunch on the harbor, we pedaled up the coast to Halibut Point where we abandoned our bikes and hiked out to the rocky cliffs with a view from Essex to Mt. Agamenticus in York, Maine.From there on it was mostly down-hill, through the little village of Annisquam and across the wooden bridge which spans the inlet once used to ferry the granite from quarries on Halibut Point.
Our ride was a little early in the season so we had very limited choices for dinner. We finally decided on the Gloucester House in the center of town. Turned out fine, lots of good food, drinks and conversations, as usual!
- Judy Scmid
Cross-country ski trip - New Hampshire - February
Greetings Fugawis! We have survived another grueling winter in New England and with the first day above freezing our thoughts turn to another great biking season!
The most adventurous of us rendez-voued in the frozen woods of New Hampshire for a day of cross country skiing in February. Actually, the weather was quite mild, the skiing was very comfortable and, for some of us, a new experience. (It was duly noted that all the Republicans had gone south!) Afterwards we retired to the Flying Goose Pub to restore our depleted energy reserves.
Some of us suffered through the snow and cold, some of us retreated to the sunny south, some of us did both! See: Fred, the Pirate, Sanibel-Captiva Tour, Alligator Fred (, On the Trail, and Apres Bike. But now that April is upon us, it is time to tune up our bikes, fill up those tires, put on our helmets and get those rusty bodies back in shape for our first ride of the season. I can hardly wait!
Trips in 2004
Block Island - October 30-31
In preparation for our invasion of Block Island, Rudy prepares for a reconaissance flight over Block Island in the Summer. Rudy and Muthe returned with aerial photographs, brochures, and maps.
Block island was defenseless against the onslaught of yellow shirted Fugawis. We took over the Blue Dory Inn, a perfect place for our week-end headquarters.
Half of the group arrived on the Friday ferries and made it in time to enjoy the daily 5:30 FREE cocktail hour at the Inn. Two arrived early enough to hit the trail and scout out part of the island. Since it was Block Island's last weekend of the tourist season, the choice of a restaurant for dinner was relatively easy - there were only three places open.
After a fulfilling dinner and a gathering at the Blue Dory Fugawi cottage (aka The Fugawi Clubhouse) to distribute the new Fugawi T-shirts, we retired to the sound of rain drops on the roof.
Saturday morning some Fugawis were making the Saturday crossing. The mist, drizzle, and northwest winds added to the wind-swept, lonely, sea-battered landscape of Block Island as we met the remainder of the Fugawi force at the Ferry slip. Ignore the guy on the right. He's not one of us. After the obligatory group photo (17 Fugawis! Can you spot the biker without a Fugawi shirt?), we biked the northern part of the island, hiked a fair amount in a preserve, and ended up at the Airport Diner for lunch; 17 bright, slightly damp yellow bodies taking over the place. The lonely woman behind the counter was unruffled, though!
The weather improved slightly in the afternoon and we explored more of the Island on bike and by foot, including the Southeast Lighthouse, Block Island's landmark. After another cocktail hour at the inn, we had an enjoyable dinner at two different tables; one for the big spenders and the other for the cheapskates! The groups were initially selected by party affiliation in order to reduce the noise level of the table conversations; the big spenders never did figure out how their bill reached such heights.
A blustery wind cleared the morning fog and we awakened Sunday morning to a balmy day with blue skies. We continued on our tour of the central and southern parts of the island. We just couldn't escape the Dems as we hiked Rodham Hollow and stopped for a breather at the signpost pointing to the Heinz Recreation Field. At the hollow, our yellow shirts proved their worth when we were able to recover three Fugawis who had strayed onto the wrong path and could be spotted wandering about severa; hundred yards away. Speaking about getting lost, what was this animal doing on Block Island?
Different schedules (read: football priorities) resulted in the band disbanding at various intervals to catch ferries to the picturesque landing at Point Judith (no, not named after a founding mother of the Fugawis) and the real world; all with tired bodies and happy memories of a great final (sic) trip.
- Judy Schmid and Martin Zombeck, 11/9/04; photos by Martin, Mark, and Muthe
Click here for more photos by Muthe.
Marblehead-Nahant, MA - September 11
It seems all our trip this year have been water related, in one way or another! The Fugawi ride of September 11 was no different. It was a repeat ride of the Marblehead-Nahant ride which we took two years ago. This was scheduled because we have gained some new Fugawis and also some of the "old" Fugawis wanted to re-visit the scenic ocean views.
Because it was our second visit to this area, no one got lost, left behind or disabled! We are definitely getting more professional. Are we ready for some more challenging events?
We found ourselves returning to the same Chinese restaurant we visited on the last trip to Marblehead. It suited us perfectly, , , ,good. . . cheap. . . and we had the place practically to ourselves.
- Judy Schmid
Bristol - East Providence, RI - August 21
Bristol Trip Web site
Newburyport - Newbury - Rowley, May 1
The skies were bright overhead, a refreshing breeze was blowing and 12 fugawis and wanna-be Fugawis assembled in Newburyport for the start of a new season of biking adventures. If the past is any indication, (with minor bumps and scrapes excused), we should have a great year of discovering new places, revisiting old favorites, and enjoying our little piece of New England. Who knows, maybe we might venture into the larger world.
The ride was scenic and fairly flat. We sped by and missed the great views mentioned in our guide. Oh, well! We did visit the extensive marshes and inlets that run from Newbury to New Hampshire. One myopic Fugawi failed to heed the sign placed at the beginning of the bird sanctuary and was caught by our investigative reporter. We are taking no action as he has repented and promises to not offend again!
The ride went from sea and marsh to lovely homes, past the oldest boarding school in the U.S.; past the Governor Dummer academy, and finally through rural roads that returned to our starting point.
Our food critic was not on this ride and our lunch plans were in disarray until we spotted a MacDonald's. It was a culinary low. We made up for it at night with a great meal and drinks at Stripers on the Merrimack river in Salsbury.
- Judy Schmid, 5/5/04 (photos by Muthe Limpaecher and John White)
A great start to the seaso! Stay tuned for information on the next ride.
Newburyport Trip Web site
A possible new recruit for the Fugawis.
Trips in 2003
South Boston - July 20
".... one of the best trips yet." "....this was an A+ trip!"
The Fugawi luck held and the choice of a Sunday for this ride resulted in virtually no traffic and splendid weather (low humidity and temperatures in the low eighties).
This ride found only six Fugawis willing to brave the streets of Boston. The first leg of the ride found us on the familiar Storrow drive part of the Charles River Loop with splendid views of the Cambridge and Boston skyline and the Esplanade. We assembled at Quincy Market and proceeded to view the seals at the New England Aquarium. After a pause at Rowe's wharf, we crossed the Fort Point Channel and found ourselves in South Boston. The Federal Court House grounds provided a photo opportunity and then it was on to lunch at the No-Name Restaurant at the Boston Fish Pier. After a brief repast, we continued on to the Harbor Drydock and Falcon Pier where a Norwegian cruise ship was about to depart for Bermuda. The Boston Harbor was under tight security because of the entry of a liquid natural gas tanker. We caught a glimpse of the tanker just entering the harbor as we reached Fort Independence on Castle Island. We admired the catch of the day at the fishing pier at the fort and spent some time with a denizen of the fort. We cycled around Pleasure Bay, passed The L Street Bath House, and continued on to Columbia Point with its marvelous views of Boston and the location of the Kennedy Library and the University of Massachusetts Boston campus. We only had time for a brief visit at the Library and viewed the special exhibit celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the wedding of Jacqueline Bouvier and John F. Kennedy.
We suddenly realized that the hour was late and we had a rendevous with another Fugawi in Cambridge. We saddled up an raced for Cambridge. Unfortunately, in our haste, we left two Fugawis in our dust at Castle Island. As far as we know they are still wandering around South Boston searching for Whitey. We took a short cut through Kendall Square and stopped to see MIT's Stata Center which is nearing completion. The Center was designed by Frank O. Gehry. No, the photograph was not taken through a distorting lens. This is the type of building you get when you hire a famous architect and let him design what he wants.
We reached our final destination, Redbones, with only minutes to spare. We took advantage of their free valet parking for bikes and settled down to a healthy dinner of pulled pork, barbecued ribs, chicken, corn bread, black beans, and margaritas and microbrewed beer. We were so busy eating we forgot to document the dinner. The end of a perfect day! Too bad you missed it.
--- Martin Zombeck, 7/27/03
South Boston Trip Web site
THE MAINE EVENTS: Kennebunk, June 21; Cape Elizabeth, July 12
The Fugawi ventured to Maine for the June and July rides. Our record this year of good weather was not broken. The first ride was to Kennebunk and Kennebunkport and had the largest attendance of any ride to date, 18.
Our assorted group of "old" and new riders pedaled through Kennebunk, along the beach to Kennebunkport, through the middle of that tourist-infected town and once again along the beach towards Cape Porpoise. As luck would have it, just as most of us started getting serious hunger pangs, what appeared but a down-home lobster roll and bake sale. We took advantage of the perfect spot for a picnic.
As we all know, every Fugawi ride comes to the fateful moment. . . .which road to take, right or left? This ride was far superior to most, we never made a wrong turn (that is, most of us!)
The ride back was through lush and peaceful farm land, in great contrast to the busy coast.
No write up of this trip would be complete with out mentioning our fortuitous arrival at the Wedding Cake House just as its illustrious new owner James Hunt Barker came outside to inspect the herd of bikers that descended on his front lawn. With Southern charm oozing from every pore, Jimmy invited us in and spent the good part of the next hour giving us his version of the history of the house. Unique, amazing, and more!
At this point, we had some incidents that require a discussion of our Fugawi Rules. If you don't have a copy, just let Marty know and he will send them to you.
Before we discuss rules, this is a good time to continue with a write-up of the second trip, also well attended, with 12 Fugawi starting off from Scarborough on a lighthouse tour. We followed the shoreline and were treated to gorgeous views of marshes, lighthouses, elegant summer homes and many ocean vistas.
This ride was very much the typical Fugawi fiasco. Of the 12 original riders, we did manage to end the ride with 8. Where do we go astray? Everywhere! Our navigation skills need honing for sure, and certain rules need reviewing.
Fugawi Rule #1. Biking is a highly technical sport and equipment is a very important part of that sport. Equipment should be kept in excellent condition and checked frequently. See the example of the exploding bike tire.
Each biker should learn to use his equipment correctly and seek help if unable to do so on his own:
FUGAWI RULE # 5:Biking requires a very highly developed sense of direction. Our name says it all, we definitely need help in this area. To improve your chances of finishing the ride: you have a map, you have directions, you have a cell phone, use them! (links?)
The one area that we excel in is finding great places to eat and drink and these two rides were no exception. Our dinner in Kennebunkport had food, drink and a view of the harbor. The Great Lost Bear in Portland was a perfect place to finish a fun day of biking along the coast of Maine.
For our next ride in August, we head inland to the Connecticut River Valley.....get the tick spray ready.( see rule # 1)!
Kennebunk Trip Web site
Kennebunk Slide Show
Cape Elizabeth Trip Web site
Cape Elizabeth Slide Show
--- Judy Schmid, 7/15/03
Marion-Wareham-Onset, May 10
Our return to Buzzard's Bay was once again very fortunate. The Sun shown brightly, the summer traffic had not arrived. The only little glitch was a very steady sea breeze. Our group is also becoming more and more technically adept with digital media; movies are now being produced.
We visited the seaside towns of Marion, Wareham and Onset, stopping to admire one of our former members now immortalized as a statue on a bluff overlooking Onset Harbor. After paying homage to her we headed back, against the VERY STEADY HEADWIND. Some of us drafted off of each other and saved much energy, which was then used to haul all of the food and drink to our after-the-ride al fresco wine and cheese party.
Our rehabing member showed his progress by riding off into the sunset, only to return in time for wine and cheese. He promised to go the distance on the next ride.
Fugawi facts: no member got lost or separated from the group, the group itself was never lost, no one had a bike-related accident, and we are ready for some bigger challenges!
Our next ride is to to the "Kennebunks" in Maine. See you there!
Marion, 2003 (Slide show)
Marion, 2003 (Quicktime movie)
Marion Trip Web site
- Judy Schmid, 5/27/03
THE FIRST RIDE OF 2003 - Mattapoisett-Rochester, April 27
Our resident shaman who controls all meteorological events once again smiled on us.The miserable weather at 10 am turned into glorious sunny skies by noon.
9 Fugawis set out from our start point on a 30 mile ride which wandered through the little sea side town of Mattapoisett and inland to the cranberry growing center of Massachusetts. At this time of year the bogs are bright red with new plants and were a cheery punctuation to the green beginning to appear on the trees. Tidy little farms were scattered here and there between the bogs. We all agreed spring has finally arrived! This was the flattest ride we have taken so far (except for the Charles River ride) and was perfectly suited to a group who did not have lots of miles under their wheels at this point.
Along the way we were reminded of the coming dinner hour with a splendid scene of fattened Guinea hens. One of us settled for a dinner of partridge and figs at the local watering hole.
We also managed to meet up with authentic "bikers" taking a break in the center of Rochester during a weekend excursion.
One of our members, in the shop for repairs, did manage to show up just as we were ready to dismount bikes and head to the Mattapoisett Inn for food and drink. The Inn is quaint and charming, located on the harbor. The food was excellent, the ride was excellent, and the day was a complete success.
Over dinner the date for the next ride was decided. We will return to the Buzzard's Bay area on Saturday, May 10 for a tour of Marion and for the more adventurous, Wareham.
A unique feature of this ride: no one got lost or injured.
Mattapoisett-Rochester Trip Web site
- Judy Schmid, 5/4/03
Trips in 2002
FOURTEEN FUGAWIS ON FINAL RIDE OF 2002
Fourteen Fugawis assembled on Saturday, November 9 for the final ride of the season. Our meeting place was a Burger King parking lot on the outskirts of Newport. It was quite evident from the beginning that we were a difficult crowd to organize. Our leaders' desire to take an official photo of the last Fugawi ride of 2002 was not going well. Members were milling about, some leaving for coffee, breakfast, etc. What to do? In the nick of time, up stepped Lamont! With good humor and unquestionable authority, he whipped the bunch of us into shape, resulting in this great photo of the whole tribe (not quite - one missing). thank you, Lamont!
Our good fortune of having an organized start continued for the whole ride. The weather was amazingly warm and sunny, the scenery was spectacular (as Newport always is) and most amazing of all, everyone finished the ride in as good a shape as they started!
The ride wound around the harbor, through the center of Newport, with side trips to the International Yacht Restoration School for some and Fort Adam State Park for others. We pedaled around Breton Point and arrived at the International Tennis Hall of Fame just in time for lunch next door. In the afternoon we continued on past First Beach to Purgatory Chasm. Here there was much discussion as to weather one could jump across the chasm. Volunteers were finally dissuaded from attempting this feat, thus maintaining the status as a no-injury ride. Next stop was a bird sanctuary with views of the rocky shoreline and distant islands.
Without warning, the sun set on our little band of bikers and in the gathering gloom we dissolved into separate groups. Using different routes, we all did manage to find our way back to the cars although one or two of us had to be rescued from traveling straight towards Providence, R I.!
Last year we ate at the Portabello Restaurant in Newport and all enjoyed it so much that we returned for another delicious meal and much delicious wine. All the assembled Fugawis agreed it was a great way to end the year. We are all looking forward to next year and hope to keep in touch with everyone this winter.
P.S. We feel we are being followed by a strange Frenchman. Did anyone on the ride catch sight of him?
Newport Trip Web site
- Judy Schmid, 11/18/02
THE MAINE EVENT: York-Ogunquit, Maine, October 19
380 years after the Candlemas Massacre, a group of friendly Fugawis invaded York Village.
The natives seemed friendly at first. Then all of a sudden one of our group found herself in a most confining situation.........luckily she did manage to escape in time to continue the ride with the rest of us.
The day was a typical fall day, ominous clouds passing overhead but never materialized into disagreeable weather. We cycled along the coast of Maine from York to Ogunquit, leaving bikes behind to explore the harbor walk at York Beach, de-biking again for the Cape Neddick Lighthouse, experiencing a new and gorgeous view around every bend. Check out the slide show for some of the favorite vistas.
After a quick stop for lunch we traveled in-land to the rolling hills and fall colors of the typical Maine countryside. The ride ended back in York Village and we had a chance to visit some of the historic houses and the 17th century cemetery.
All this history, plus quite a few hills, gave us a healthy appetite which we quenched with brew and vittles at the world famous Lobster Barn in York.
Web site - York-Ogunquit, Maine
- Judy Schmid, 11/4/02
PROVINCETOWN - September 21, 2002
The Fugawis set a new record on this trip, with a four-bike crash. Fortunately no riders were involved. On the Southeast Expressway a loaded bike rack parted company with its associated car, in the fast lane. Incredibly, the following cars and trucks managed to avoid the bikes; even more incredibly, the bikes and rack were moved out of traffic by some Good Samaritan, and despite their ordeal suffered no more than superficial damage.
Meanwhile, some Fugawis decided to avoid traffic and take the high-speed ferry from Boston to Provincetown. The catamaran ferry hums across the water at a cool and breezy 40 knots. It's a luxurious ride, with multiple decks, a bar, and an in-flight safety video (whose primary message was "Don't fall off.") Coupled with a trip to the dock on the subway or commuter rail, it provided a trouble-free alternative to the risky auto travel undertaken by many Fugawis.
Except for the group who were busy collecting their bikes from the Expressway, we set out from the Provincetown dock on the short ride to Herring Cove Beach. Along the way, we spotted a large number of bicycles by the side of the road and decided to investigate. We found nothing more interesting (little did we know. However, one of our members found otherwise on Sunday.) than the start of a footpath to Herring Cove, but while we explored, one rider who had lagged a bit decided to catch the main pack, roared past us, and spent the next several hours in a futile attempt to catch us. He has since been advised of a fundamental Fugawi rule: "If you think you might be behind everybody, you're wrong." He had the consolation of lunch and refreshment back in Provincetown by the time the rest of us were halfway around the Province Lands trail.
We stopped at the Province Lands Visitor Center, which provides a rooftop 360-degree view of the outermost Cape. The Expressway adventurers joined the rest of us there, a bit chagrined but none the worse for their experience. We tested the water at Race Point Beach, but no one was adventurous enough to completely submerge despite the mild September weather. Finally we cruised back through the Beech Forest, which was hilly, woodsy, and quiet, to the center of Provincetown. Of course all traffic regulations were stringently observed.
After taking on some nourishment and restorative fluids, we split into several sub-groups. One group retrieved the car from the Visitor Center; another explored the various attractions of downtown Provincetown; and a third rode off and found (by accident) the Head of the Meadow trail in Truro, which ends at another broad, unpopulated beach. (Not the clothing-optional Truro beach - OK, we couldn't find that one). Somehow, most of us managed to reconverge for dinner at Bubala's by the Bay, where we enjoyed oysters, Martinis, and some incidental entertainment.
Most Fugawis stayed over in P-town. One had an uneventful (except for the Boston taxi driver who suggested that he should "Get off the f...ing road") trip home via ferry and the T. The end of the summer turned out to be a great time to enjoy Provincetown; it should become a staple element of the Fugawi calendar.
Web site- Provincetown, September 21, 2002
- John White, September 23, 2002
BY THE SEA....
One of the most picturesque rides the Fugawi have taken so far turned out to be right in our own back yard. On Saturday, August 31, 10 little indians started out on a trip from Marblehead to Nahant (1 later joined the group in Lynn). We cycled the little-known Marblehead Rail Trail into Swampscott where we made the first of many stops at Marian Court College overlooking the Atlantic, at one time the summer home of President Calvin Coolidge. We continued on past luxurious summer beach houses and picked up the Lynn Promenade and from there onto the Nahant Causeway bike trail. The breezes off the ocean kept us cool until we reached the island of Nahant.
The interesting thing about Nahant is that there is virtually no public parking anywhere on the island. This makes for very little traffic and great biking. Points of interest included Bass Point Rocks with views of Boston and the harbor and Eastern Point with magnificent views of the entire North Shore, from Gloucester to Boston. We also discovered a hidden little beach that reminded some of the French Riviera. Nahant circumnavigated, we stopped for nourishment on Nahant beach and then continued on for a brief tour of Marblehead. We almost managed to complete the ride without separating but did somehow all manage to arrive at the Schmid's for pizza and beer. A beautiful sunset ended a beautiful day.
Web site - Marblehead-Swampscott-Lynn-Nahant
- Judy Schmid, 9/24/02
It was hot. 100 degrees. It was hilly. We grunted, we groaned, we sweated. It was a heck of a challenge! But in the end we had a great time. All who participated felt they had risen to the challenge!
Our ride of August 17 wound it's way through the mill towns and hills of northern Rhode Island. Pedaling briefly on the bike path, we detoured into Lincoln State Park for a much needed swim in the lake at the park's center. Unfortunately, three Fugawis were attacked by a nasty denizen of the lake that bit hard enough to draw blood! So much for a refreshing swim. It was back on our bikes and on with the final few miles of the ride. The highlight of the day was a fantastic barbecue at Marty's house with much needed food and drink!
With better weather on the horizon, we decided to squeeze in another ride in August, a tour of Marblehead, Swampscott, and Nahant on August 31. See you there.
Web site - Blackstone Valley - Lincoln-Cumberland, RI
- Judy Schmid, 8/26/02
BUCOLIC BIKING WITH THE FUGAWI BUNCH
Birds chirped in the trees, tractors hummed in the fields, tidy New England farms rolled by as we pedaled through the towns of Weston, Wayland, Sudbury, and Lincoln. With the luck of the Fugawi, the weather was perfect and the company superb. The 30 mile ride was chock full of points of interest. (Although only the two wounded-but-recovering members who took the short route got to visit Drumlin Farm and pet the various farm animals).
We made a detour to visit Walden Pond and the replica of Walden's tiny hideaway. We also stopped to admire the Gropius House, built in 1938 and still looking very avante qarde. The DeCordova Museum was our final "cultural event". We had a much needed lunch and viewed the current exhibit, winding our way around the sculpture park as we departed.
The last stop on our ride was Healthpoint in Waltham, one of area's premier health facilities and home of the Celtics Training Facility. Needless to say, it was located on top of a never-ending hill which was the final challenge of the day! We needed those Margaritas for dinner!
Of course, no Fugawi trip is complete without one crisis. One of our senior members got to his car and realized he had lost his keys and left the sun roof and a window open. After trying to pass blame to various innocent members present, he resigned himself to the fact that it would be a long pedal home. Undaunted, the next day he retraced the ride and, once again, with the luck of the Fugawi, found his keys embedded in the road at the entrance to the Gropius House; useable none-the-less!
Web site - Weston-Lincoln-Wayland-Sudbury Ride
More photos of trip
- Judy Schmid, July 17, 2002
CHARLES RIVER LOOP
Dr. Paul Dudley White was the world's most eminent heart specialist in the middle of the 20th century. He could often be seen commuting on Memorial Drive in Cambridge, on his bicycle. Nevertheless, he lived to a ripe old age. Realizing that his long survival was a matter more of chance than design, the MDC declared that the collection of sidewalks and footpaths around the Charles River Basin was a bicycle path, laid down a thin sheet of asphalt on the unpaved bits, and named it after Dr. White. On the first day of June, the Fugawi tackled this path.
We started at the Porter Exchange, noted as the home of the best Japanese food in the area, as well as some other institutions of lesser significance. Our first stop was at the Smithsonian Observatory. The observatory is no longer used for observations of the heavens (except for a small submillimeter research telescope and telescopes for "Open Nights"), but it gave us a good view of Boston across the rooftops of Cambridge. We then proceeded through some pleasant back streets, past the Longfellow House, to the bike path along Memorial Drive.
Our first stop was at the boathouse now owned by the BB&N School. In a previous, less respectable incarnation, this boathouse was the scene of youthful misdeeds of certain Fugawi participants; fortunately, we can't remember them. We then rode past the site of the old Watertown Arsenal, now converted to a standard-issue suburban shopping mall; no traces of residual radioactivity from the Arsenal's reactor were detected. We continued to the river crossing at Watertown Square, where we headed back on the Boston side of the river.
Unfortunately, one only moderately clumsy rider was distracted, as usual ("I see, Holmes." "You see, my dear Watson, but you do not observe."), hit a rough spot, and managed to execute a perfect three point landing: shoulder, elbow, and knee. The Fugawi were prepared! That rider now carries a modest first aid kit, thereby demonstrating that he can learn from experience. After a pause for washing and bandaging, we continued to the Boston Esplanade. Sunbathers were out in force and a solitary sideways cyclist, but we managed to keep focused on the job at hand and made it through the destruction of the Big Dig to the Sail Loft without further incident. Lunch was followed by espresso and biscotti at the Cafe Paradiso in the North End. We had barely enough energy left to make our way back up the river against a heavy headwind, with a brief pause at the MIT Sailing Pavillion.
A Fugawi first! Nobody got lost.
Web site - Charles River Loop
Coming next: Learning to Live with Road Rash
- John White, June 7, 2002Xs
9 STARTED. . . .
Our first ride of the season was, as Fugawi luck would have it, gorgeous weather-wise and location-wise. Conanicut Island, on the west side of the Newport Bridge is a look at the past, maybe the way Nantucket or Martha's Vineyard was before they were discovered by hoards of travelers. A thick fog that drifted through in waves added to the ambiance of the day.
The 26 mile tour turned into almost 29 with side trips to an early lighthouse, a World War II era fort which now is a launching point for more modern aviators, and a stop at Watson Farm, a working 18th century farm.
The final hills made some liquid refreshment and a well-earned rest at a local tavern all the more enjoyable. Dinner followed at the local Portuguese-American Club. Our discussions included ideas for the next rides.
The Fugawi may be faulted for having lost that native sense of direction, we tend to fall off our bikes at the worst times, (bridges), we may not always follow our leaders. But.. . . .never let it be said that we are not kind to animals!
Two of our members disappeared in the middle of the ride and after much searching and calling, we learned that they had left on a mission of mercy, their puppy was alone and in need of some attention or, as we surmised, the consequences could have been disastrous. We hope they made it home in time!
Web site - Jamestown, RI - Conanicut Island, in Narragansett Bay
7 FINISHED. . . .
- Judy Schmid, 4/18/02
Trips in 2001