In addition to making sure we were
both wearing leis and Hawaiian style outfits, Virginia stocked the
tandem with lots of Hawaiian style potato chips. She was bringing
some aloha to the Aloha ride.
The ride started for us on our way
to the beginning at the Mountain View Caltrain station. There were
lots of bikes parked in front of the liquor store on Castro St. We
followed those other lei wearers down Castro St. Somehow the big
crowd put us in a good mood. So exciting to be part of something
Alex was our fearless leader this
month. He wanted to kick things off by riding around the parking
lot a bit. We took the opportunity to take pictures of the
Aloha that was there to be seen.
There was a surprising number of low
rider bikes there. I heard that a lot of them had decided to
rendezvous at the Shiny Side Up bike festival at History Park in
San Jose. They had picked this weekend so that they could kick it
off by representing at San Jose Bike Party, despite the fact that
we're on the peninsula this month. They really added a lot of
showy style to the event.
I was surprised to see some of those
time share bikes. The people on them must be tourists that were
looking for a cheap rental for the evening. Hope it worked out for
There were flower necklaces and
Hawaiian shirts everywhere.
This group shot is almost the only
picture above Virginia didn't take. There was a brief speaking
section, including going over how we ride (Obey the law. Don't get
smashed. Roll past conflict. Have fun, BIKE PARTY!) Then we had
about two minutes to stow everything and get our bikes ready to
Then we followed the pineapple
around the parking lot one last time and then out to the street.
We started near the front of the
pack. There was a steady swirl of people passing us and following
us and doing whatever. Every time I saw one stopped with a phone
in their ear I figured they were asking some other rider(s) "Where
Nowadays there are quite a few kids
that have no trouble handling the distance on their own bikes.
Usually they have mom or dad nearby.
By this time it was dark enough that
I was starting to enjoy the lights on peoples bikes.
San Antonio was straight with enough
downhill that it felt like coasting with an engine under the hood.
Nice and relaxing after the struggle up Cuesta.
Found out later that Boone counted
620 riders at the peak. All I knew was there seemed to be an
endless river of lights ahead of me and another endless river of
other riders behind me.
Virginia put away her camera as soon
as we got off the tandem. I took a few pictures, but mainly spent
time hanging out with friends. Found out later that there was a
dance floor someplace we didn't get to that was off the hook.
Sorry about missing that, but we had fun anyhow.
Stephanie brought her grown but
still young kids, but I forgot to turn on the flash for some
reason. Still, you can see that they are nice young adults.
Once we got rolling again the first
interesting sight that Virginia captured was this red lit tandem.
When the pack turned right on
Colorado we stopped to bird that turn. For a while we were busy
yelling "Right turn bike party!" and variations on that. After the
road emptied and it seemed like more riders were unlikely, we
scrambled to catch up with the action. Didn't really get there
until the regroup, where we enjoyed ourselves.
Thank you Mr. DJ! He kept us dancing
until the clock ran out.
The rest of the ride wasn't much. Go
right on California and pedal a couple of miles.
Then finish by cruising down Castro
to the train station.
The weather was perfect. Everybody
was in a good mood. Since home wasn't far off we weren't in a
hurry to leave. The same was true for quite a few others. We hung
around the train station and talked about this and that until the
last train arrived.
I was curious about how many of us
were going to use the train to get back to San Jose. Didn't get
close enough quick enough to get an idea how many were there
waiting when the train arrived. There were not many at the north
end car, but people were still loading quickly on the southern car
after the rest of the platform had cleared. I bet it was great fun
to ride back with that crowd.
After that it was time to go.
Virginia and I went home happy. Thank you bike party for another