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10/18/2009: "Fixies, Fenders, and Food"
Having settled on Hermosa Beach as my turnaround for this morning's ride, last night I Tweeted it, and mentioned it to the iBOB list as well. Figured I could get a little company along for the ride--and sure enough, while I waited the stated half-hour at Massimo's around the corner from home, in rode John V. and Brian C., up uncharcteristically early for a Sunday, and very welcome faces indeed!

A couple of espressos later, we wandered out to saddle up--and I had to laugh.

John had ridden his new-to-him Tanguy, Brian had brought the Quickbeam, and I of course was riding the Bottecchia.

All three were fixed-wheels. All three sported fenders. And all three had Carradices hanging from the saddles. (Okay, Brian's was a Carradice-inspired bag, but almost identical.)

And off we went!

Hazy day, not too hot but still sunny most of the time, a great, quick ride--Miracle Mile to Hermosa Beach in about an hour, and we faced plenty of traffic lights, since I dragged us through Culver City, down to the Ballona Wetlands, up through the gap in the Westchester Bluffs to cut in front of the runways at LAX, and through the narrow streets of busy little beach towns till we got to the foot of the Hermosa pier. I like it there because:
  1. It hosts Café Bonaparte, run by a real Frenchman and serving spectacular pastries (unfortunately they were out of the Paris-Brest artery-cloggers), and
  2. It is the only real (although probably accidental) town square I know of in the LA area, full of people on bike and on foot and (mostly) on chairs and benches enjoying food, drink, and each other.
We chose the beachside bike path for the return, taking it slowish between the shorreside cliffs and the crashing Pacific, enjoying the people enjoying the day.

A stop at the Bridge--my "church"--where we parted ways.

A very nice day, great riding, happy people, and the sea and the sky. And fixies!

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