To Long Beach: a perfect bicycling day

1/2/22

Today was a nearly perfect day! I’m happy to be on the road again, after a restful two weeks in LA.

My ride to Long Beach was thoroughly pleasant. After some very car-centric LA streets for the first few miles, I found myself on a car-free bike path (although unfortunately not loud-moped-free) next to a canal, and it stretched for miles and miles. The weather could not have been nicer (yay!) with temps in the mid-60s, continuous sunshine, and the gentlest of breezes. I felt like my life was beginning again, after the recent rainy hiatus.

At the end of the bike path, I joined Hwy 1—the Pacific Coast Highway, a high-traffic road—to arrive in Long Beach. I rode it for several miles before arriving at my motel for the night, which if I’m honest sketched me out a bit when I pulled in shortly before dusk.

The “office” was simply a window of bulletproof glass. While I waited for someone to answer the doorbell to check me in, a haggard-looking man rolled up on a bike to use the vending machine in the parking lot.

While I was checking in, some other residents came by to complain to the attendant that they had had some groceries delivered to their room from Walmart, but the groceries were nowhere to be found.

I had to fill out a registration form, and even put down a $20 cash(!) deposit, which the attendant assured me would be refunded when I check out in the morning. I didn’t have $20 cash on me, but there was an ATM a few steps away. Hesitantly, I went ahead and took out the money, for the low fee of $2.95 (plus whatever fee my credit union will charge me.)

Wow. Hmm.

But, as soon as I settled in to the tiny but clean room, I headed back out on my bike to hit the highly rated local outpost of The Grain Café, an all vegan and all organic restaurant. I ordered breakfast for dinner: a tofu scramble with sweet potatoes and toast on the side. Naturally, I also had to sample their chocolate cake. (Isn’t it photogenic with a Brompton in the background?)

Now it’s time to rest up for my ride along the coast to Newport Beach tomorrow!

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2 thoughts on “To Long Beach: a perfect bicycling day”

  1. You know … sometimes, when I read your blog entries or your facebook posts, I feel like I wish I was with you — but only for the restaurants, not for the hard parts. 🙂

    Hang in there, Maren. You rock!

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