Ride 8 – KungFuTea

Date:  Sunday 19 November 2017
Destination:  KungFuTea in Reston, VA
Mileage:  4 miles
Posted by:  Dan

This afternoon, we went for the final ride of this year’s coffeeneuring season to a place that I had never been.  It was a place called KungFuTea in Reston.  My oldest daughter Anna, who is a sophomore at NOVA, says that the awkward kids in her communications class, who seem to have had a little too much caffeine, go there.

The weather during the ride out and back was NOT optimal.  It was in the forties with stiff winds gusting up to 50 mph from the northwest according to the weather woman on WTOP.    It was not a bad as it sounds, but there were lots of limbs down in our yard and our neighbor Matt, who lives a few doors down, had a whole tree come down across his driveway this morning.

At KungFuTea, Anna got a Strawberry Lemon Green Tea with Tapioca Pearls.  Sarah got a KungFu Milk Tea with Tapioca Pearls.  Becca ordered Oreo Milk Tea and I got a Honey Green Tea.  By default, all of the drinks were chilled.  But, I think you can order hot versions of some beverages.  Apparently, you can choose to have things like “bubbles” and/or jam added, but with the exception of the Tapioca and Oreo “Mix-Ins”, we deferred.  I’m not sure if the Tapioca Pearls are the “bubbles” or if the “bubbles” are CO2?  I will have to do more research on that….

If you have never had Tapioca Pearls like me, it is a unique experience.  They are basically black balls (about a quarter of an inch in diameter) that fall to the bottom of the sugary and in some cases milky or colored iced tea.  If coffee beans were round and black, that is what they look like.  The special straw they give you is big enough to allow you to suck them up your straw.  When you bite into one, these balls kind of have the texture of a gummy bear and don’t have much of a taste.  If you have never had this type of beverage, I think you should at least try it once just to say that you have done it although I am not sure the quality of your life will go up that much.

Rebecca was not super happy with her drink and after taste testing everyone else’s drink, she decided she liked Anna’s Strawberry Lemon Green Tea with Tapioca best.  Anna agreed to a swap, which was incredibly nice of her.  I give Anna kudos for swapping, which made the situation much better and her younger sister happier.  I’m thinking there is a special place in heaven for people like Anna.

The atmosphere at KungFuTea was great.  After the cold and windy ride, it was warm inside and the lady at the counter was patient with me as I tried to figure out what exactly to order.  There was either K-Pop or J-Pop playing in the background.  I couldn’t tell which one because I don’t speak or understand either Korean or Japanese.  The volume of the music was just right in my opinion.   They also had games that you could play if you wanted.   I decided to play a round of Jenga.  Not everyone was interested at first, but everyone ultimately got into it.   I won’t say who caused the tower of rectangular wooden blocks to fall, but it was definately not me.

On the ride back, about a half a mile from home, Rebecca (my youngest child, who’s 9 years old) says without prompting “Bikes are magical.”  I say “What makes you say that?” And she says “Because I’m happy!”  And that makes me happy.   : )

 

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Ride 7- KSB New York Deli

Date:  Friday 17 November 2017
Destination:  KSB New York Deli in Herndon
Mileage:  3 miles
To Posted by:  Sarah

On Friday the 17th of November, my sisters and I went for the second to last coffeenering ride of the season. It was a cold windy day so, we decided to bike up to the local New York Deli to get warm delicious bagels. On our way, we took a trail so Rebecca wouldn’t be on the road as long.  On the trail, we had to carry our bikes down a set of stairs which went surprisingly well. We made it to the Deli safely. It was nice and warm in the cafe. We ordered bagels; Anna and Rebecca got garlic with butter, and I got Asiago with butter. To drink, Anna and I got strawberry milk, and Rebecca got apple juice. We sat in a booth by the window; after we finished we biked home. When we got to the downhills in our neighborhood, I began to do the Macarena while riding my bike, which made Rebecca bust up laughing.  I even tried to ride like Chris Froome down the hill after Anna dared me to. On the last hill, Rebecca decided to sing her favorite Moanna song at the top of her lungs which made everyone laugh. It was a fun ride with good food, and great company.

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Ride 6- Duncan Donuts in Reston

Date:  Sunday 12 November 2017
Destination:  Duncan Donuts in Reston
Mileage:  4.5 miles
Posted by:  Dan

This afternoon, Rebecca, Sarah, Anna and I rode to Duncan Donuts.  Everyone but Anna got a Boston Creme Donut–Anna got a Vanilla Iced Donut.  With our donuts, we each had different drinks.  Becca had apple juice.  Sarah had chocolate milk.  Anna got chai tea.  And I had a coffee.

The quote of the day is from Anna who, as we were leaving the coffee shop, said: “If they had Thanksgiving Songs, I think I would probably sing them!”  Ha.    : )

With a cloudy sky and temperatures in the forties, the weather was not the best, but it could have been much much worse.    The fall colors are still here, but a lot of the leaves are off the trees and down on the ground.

With six rides down, I have one more to go to complete the challenge.   Stay tuned to see where we end up going next week…

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Ride 5 – Cafein in Chantilly

Date:  Friday 10 November 2017
Destination:  Cafein in Chantilly, VA
Mileage:  15 total miles
Posted by:  Dan.

Today’s outing was a solo ride with a few stops.   I kind of had the day off and the girls had other plans.  So, I was all by myself.  First, I stopped at work to complete a couple of actions, then I went to the coffee shop before stopping at a nearby Asian Supermarket for the first time ever.

After a little work, I pedaled to the coffee shop where I had a latte and a pecan bar.  The combination was not cheap–it was about $8.50 including a $1 tip.  I will say though that both the latte and the pecan bar were excellent.  I hung out for a while and enjoyed the time to myself with my afternoon treat while people watching and checking my twitter feed.

I got the idea for visiting the Asian Market from a friend at work who said that they had good produce for a good price. As I try to live a healthier lifestyle, I got a lot of purple stuff–purple cabbage, purple onion and believe or not, purple sweet potatoes.  I also got some ginger root, turmeric root, and bananas.   I think I got a really good deal as everything all together was only $6.48.  I will probably go back, especially since the local farmer’s market is closing for the season at the end of November.

The only issue with today’s ride was the weather.   According to the thermometer on my bike, it was in the low forties and high thirties during my ride.  I also experienced some pretty strong winds at times.  I am sure there were gusts well above 20mph.  Having said that, I am glad that it wasn’t raining!

Good luck to my LSU Tigers who play Arkansas tomorrow at around noon in Death Valley on ESPN.  Geaux Tigers!

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The Coffee Shop

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Suburban Traffic Jam

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These are the items that I bought from the Asian Supermarket.  A couple of the sweet potatoes are missing because we ate them for dinner before I thought to take a picture.  I also should have taken a picture of the purple sweet potato after it was cooked since it was pretty neat looking inside.   Maybe later…

Ride 4 – Starbucks at Fox Mill in Herndon

Date:  Saturday 4 November 2017
Destination:  Starbucks at Fox Mill Shopping Center in Herndon.
Mileage:  3 miles round trip
Posted by:  Dan.

This afternoon after three soccer games and dealing with the massive number of leaves in our yard, we tried to get a quick coffeeneuring ride in ahead of the rain predicted later in the day.   I thought that I heard the weather woman on 103.5 FM WTOP say that the rain would not start until around dark.  (I little foreshadowing here:  One of us was wrong.  I’m not sure if it was me, but I have already decided to throw her under the bus.)  So, we took off on our short ride with overcast skies, colorful fall leaves on the trees and a temperature in the high 50’s…

Once at Starbucks, Becca got hot chocolate.  I selected Chai Tea.  (I have been listening to the book on Audible titled “How Not to Die” and decided to try one of the recommendations.)   Anna got a pint of milk and Sarah got a lemonade-flavored Power Aid from the Giant supermarket next door at the shopping center.  Once we had our drinks, we all sat outside of Starbucks at a table and enjoyed each other’s company as well as our drinks.

Unfortunately, we didn’t beat the rain.  It started raining before we were done at Starbucks.  So, we ended up getting a little wet on the 1.5-mile ride on the way home, but it was not a huge deal.  Life is good.  As the LSU Head Football Coach O would say: “Geaux Tigers!”

We have three more rides to go to complete the challenge.   Potential destinations include:  Duck Donuts in Herndon, Duncan Donuts, Starbucks at South Lakes, Cafein in Chantilly as well as Cold Stone or Whole Foods in Vienna.   Stay tuned to see what happens next…

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Ride 3 – Hunter’s Woods Safeway in Reston

Date:  Tuesday 31 October 2017 (Halloween)
Destination:  Starbucks at Fox Mill Shopping Center in Herndon.
Mileage:  3 miles round trip
Posted by:  Dan.

Today’s destination was the Safeway in the Reston Hunter’s Woods Shopping Center.   I got a Yellow Lemon-Lime Flavored Power Aid.  Did you know that it contains four ions–sodium, potassium, calcium, and magnesium?  (Should ions be capitalized?)  A 32-oz bottle has 320 calories.  Anna got hot Chai Tea.   Sarah got Sweet Iced Tea.  And Rebbecca enjoyed a Strawberries and Creme Frappuccino.   Her tall 12-oz size drink with whip cream had 270 calories.   I think she enjoyed hers more than I did mine.    Everybody got a free tootsie roll given out by Safeway since it was Halloween.   According to Google, a Tootsie Roll has 28 calories.

I do think it is important to point out that I did “ride hurt” this afternoon.   I sprang my ankle pretty badly a few days back while I was out for a jog.  It happened at dusk as a car approached.  When I tried to get as close the edge of the road as possible to avoid the car, my ankle gave way and I went down to the ground after my foot landed on the uneven boundary obscured by leaves between the road and the ditch.  I will leave out the picture of my ankle (because you can’t unsee it), but it is still pretty swollen and bruised.  On a scale of 1-10, the pain was around a 2 or 3 during the ride.  I wore an ace bandage and tried to pedal faster than normal in a lower-than-normal gear to reduce the strain on my ankle.

Although it was a little crisp outside, it was a beautiful day for a ride.   Because the temperature was in the fifties, it was a little cold when sitting at the picnic tables in the shade cast by the supermarket.   So, we decided to move to a more sunny and warm location at a bench along a walking path at the shopping plaza to enjoy our beverages of choice.

When we got home from the ride, my wife immediately told me about the terrorist who a just used a truck he rented from Home Depot to attack cyclists riding in a New York City bike lane.  The ISIL-inspired terrorist killed eight and injured 12 real people like me and you.  I am sure these victims have full lives with people who they love and who love them very much just like me and you.  I am sure that each of the individuals did absolutely nothing to the idiot who attacked them.  This breaks my heart.  I pray for God to be with and comfort the victims as well as the families and friends of those attacked.  I also pray that the thinking and feelings that led to these attacks are somehow corrected and that we ultimately find a way to end these horrible attacks…  In Christ’s name….  Amen.

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Ride 2- Chipotle, Pot Belly & Chick-fil-A

Date:  Saturday 21 October 2017
Destination:  Chipotle, Pot Belly & Chick-fil-A in Reston.
Mileage:  9 miles round trip
Posted by:  Dan.

With the temperature in the low 70’s, it was a perfect day for a ride.

This was a coffeeneuring ride/meet-up for lunch.  Anna, Sarah, Rebecca and I rode our bikes to a complex near the YMCA in Reston where there are several restaurants to have lunch with their mom/my wife, who is not really that into biking (to put it politely).

Becca selected nuggets with waffle fries and lemonade from Chick-fil-A.  Jennifer and Anna split a big Potbelly sandwich with Zapp’s Pot Belly Hot Pepper flavored potato chips.  Sarah and I halved a steak burrito bowl with corn tortilla chips and pico de gallo from Chipotle.  Jennifer refused to eat at Chipotle because she was afraid of getting sick from food poisoning.  In case you are wondering, both Sarah and I enjoyed our meal and neither of us got sick.  Jennifer says that their new queso sauce looks good, but she can make it at home without ecoli!  Ha!

I have to confess that I don’t think anyone actually had coffee.  But, I think this ride still counts since we adhered to the spirit of coffeeneuring rule?  I will defer the judges on that one.  Either way, we had a good outing.

Now is probably a good time to give our friend Paul a shout out for coming up with and following through on the idea of swapping kid bikes.  We gave up a cheap K-Mart bike that was getting too small for Becca for a much better blue Giant bike that was just the right size for her.  I do think it was a win-win deal because we both got something that would meet our needs for something we were no longer using.   And we will probably give him back the Giant bike for his youngest daughter (who is named Ellenor) once Becca outgrows it and Ellenor is ready for it.

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Ride 1 – 7-Eleven

Date:  Sunday 15 October 2017 
Starting Point:
  Home
Destination:  7-Eleven on Soapstone in Reston.
Mileage:  3 miles round trip
Posted by:  Dan.

My three daughters and I biked to 7-Eleven after my 9-year-old daughter’s soccer game at a soccer field near my house.   Becca and Anna got Slurpees.  Sarah and I got iced coffees.   We enjoyed our drinks outside while talking and then rode home.   I’m thinking it would be great if they some tables outside like some of the other shops in the area.

The saddest part of the ride was when Rebecca dropped her Slurpee.  There were a few tears.  But, that was fixed by going inside and quickly buying another one.

Overall, it was a good ride… even if the pictures don’t all show smiling faces.

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Ride 9 – Cycling for Cash

Date:   Thursday  30 March 2017  
Starting Point:
  Reston
Destination:  Tysons Corner
Mileage:  23 miles total
Posted by:  Dan

Goal?
The goal of this ride was to get to withdraw $40 from the ATM at work.

Who?
It was just me.

Riding Conditions?
It was cooler today.  It was in the 40’s with a little sun on the way in and then cloudy and in the 50’s on the way home.

What did I learn?
I counted 17 lanes of traffic on I-495 from the W&OD Trail Bridge that crosses the road also known as the Beltway.  That is way more than I would have thought.  I would not have noticed this if it had not been for the errandonnee challenge.

How did it turn out?
As a result of this ride, I have an extra 40 bucks on my person.  I am not too sure yet where I will spend it, but it is good to have some walking around money.

I also added a couple of other errands along the way.  I stopped for jet fuel (a Milky Way bar and a Gatorade) and to watch some little league “spring training” on the way home.

I am thinking that the ATM withdrawal counts as “personal business,” watching baseball practice counts as “Arts & Entertainment,”  and that the jet fuel stop counts as “Personal Care?”

I would have really liked to take tomorrow afternoon off of work and to bike downtown to the Nats Exhibition Game against the Boston Red Sox planned for Friday afternoon but the weatherman is saying that there is pretty much a 100% chance of rain.  So, I’m out.

Next up, I think that I am going to do a Slurpeeneuring Challenge with my kids this summer.  I don’t think this is a thing…  but I am going to make it a thing.

And, I will definitely do the Coffeeneuring Challenge in the Fall!

Before I go, I want to thank chasingmailboxes.com for creating this challenge as it has really been fun to complete.

Scoring?
Total Miles (so far):  107
Total Errands Completed: 15
Errand breakdown (by Category):
>Personal Care: 1 (Jet Fuel Stop)
>Personal Business: 2 (Scavenger Hunt Clean-Up, ATM)
>You carried WHAT on your bike (or back)?!: 2 (Chips for Anna + Groceries)
>Arts and Entertainment: 2 (Starbucks by Myself and Spring Training)
>Non-Store Errand: 1 (Post Office)
>Social Call: 1 (CAFIN w/ Becca and Sarah)
>Work or Volunteering, School: 2 (Commute to Work)
>Store:  2  (7-Eleven and Aldi)
>Wild Card: 2 (Scavenger Hunt Set Up and Rescue)

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The W&OD Trail Bridge over I-495.  How many lanes of traffic can you count?

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Jet Fuel

 

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Spring Training and Cherry Blossoms.

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More Cherry Blossoms

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Daffodils with Tulips.  Spring is coming.