A Summer Tradition

4:33 PM

This morning is everything I love about summer: a beautiful sunrise, not a cloud in the sky, and a nice breeze from the south to keep the humidity down.  After an easy (and downhill) ride on the commuter bikes we arrive at the Birchwood Café, my bike team’s home base.  Sure, other teams may be attached to a shop, but only the cool ones come with locally-sourced ingredients and amazing coffee.

But today is not about the coffee (though I did have the requisite 3 cups of Peace Coffee’s special Birchwood Blend).  No, today is about the Viva le French Toast and a front row seat for stage 13:

This is why I love riding for Birchwood – we know how to celebrate good food and good cycling.  Every summer the café puts up a big television on a wall usually reserved for a local artist, and there is only one thing that shows: the Tour.  Stop in any day when the stages are rolling and you can watch in the company of others who appreciate the beauty of a perfectly executed echelon. 

Like today…holy cow…what a stage!  First we get the sprinters smelling blood in the water when the peleton first split.  And then, “Venga!  Venga!” and it happens.  Saxo sees their chance and takes it; Cav, Sagan, and enough of their pals jump on to make it worthwhile, and everything goes sideways. 

I love it when things go sideways in a bike race!  So let’s all raise a mug of French roast and cheer on any rider willing to take a risk.  Allez!  Allez!  Allez!

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