I arrived home on Saturday 17th. October after a three week tour of the West Coast. (Oregon and California.) When my wife Kathy and I left on the 29th. September there was a storm moving into South Carolina.
In the days that followed there were stories on the news of widespread flooding and the state being declared a disaster area. However, we arrived home to find our house completely dry and untouched by the events of nature.
I pride myself in being somewhat of a writer, but since my return, and after writing and re-writing for the last several days, I have failed miserably to capture what I experienced on this trip. It was everything I hoped it would be, and then some on top of that.
I was fortunate enough to build a few good bike frames in the past, but it continues to amaze me when people tell me over and over how much the still enjoy riding these bikes some 25 or 30 or more years later. It is something I still have a hard time getting my head around.
Most of the people my wife and I stayed with on the trip I had never met before, just corresponded by email. Yet without exception, they made us feel so welcome and at ease. And it wasn’t just the bike enthusiasts, but their spouses and members of the family who did not necessarily share the same level of passion for the bicycle.
After a hectic start in Portland, (Previously outlined here.) where we got lost, held up in traffic, and arrived an hour late. The rest of the trip went smoothly. We may have taken the occasional wrong turn, and had to double back but we never got completely lost as we did in Portland.
My previous attempts at writing this read like a boring travelogue, with names of people and places. So I decided to simply post just a few pictures from the events with captions.
My wife Kathy did most of the driving and also was in charge of the camera. So on our last two stops in Hollywood, and Laguna Beach we relaxed and lived the California Dream. After all this was a vacation too.
On these final days we didn’t take many pictures, we didn’t need them. We have the pictures in our mind of the places, the beautiful California sunshine, and the people. Especially the people. Thank you all for making this trip so very special.
Eugene, Oregon. With Bob Zumwalt. Former San Diego bike shop owner. Bob has owned this 1983 John Howard from new.
Davis, CA. With Brian Sinclair (Left.) Looking at his 63cm. custom Criterium. Brian admits it is a tad big, but custom frames are so rare, one does not always have the luxury of finding one in the right size.
Davis, CA. This quite rare Paris Sport tandem showed up. I built this one around 1979-1980.
Sunnyvale, CA. A tall bike for a tall rider. Neale Barret with his 64cm. FRX.
Talking bikes in Sunnyvale.
San Luis Obispo. An attentive audience at Wally's Bike Shop.
San Luis Obispo. With Kyle Radford, who with his brother Kent commissioned the Recherché frames in 1985.
Chin Hills, CA. With "Wild" Bill Silverman at Empire Bikes.
Chino Hills. With Nick Delia. I co-sponsored Nick on the track when he was twenty-something. This was one of the track bikes I built for him.
A good showing of bikes in Chino Hills.
Chino Hills. Enjoying a "Cold One" with Fuso owners at Empire Bikes.
Footnote: The Tee Shirts were a big success, I still have some for others who are not on the West Coast, or could not make it. The price is $20 each, plus $5 shipping.
If you buy two I will send a FREE signed copy of my book, Prodigal Child.
Email me at davesbikeblog [AT]gmail.com
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