Friday, April 9, 2010
Rambling Around a SMALLER Town....
Today was a beautiful, sunny Spring day, so I packed a light lunch and rode North from Ennis to Palmer. The ride to Palmer is one I do regularly as a short training ride, often accompanied by my wife, Rhonda. I had the day off today and she had to work, so I rode solo. We like this ride because we can go straight out Main street from Ennis, and after crossing FM 879 at Garrett, there is almost no traffic; it is almost like having a designated bike path there is so little traffic!
I stopped at the gazebo that is on main street next to the railroad tracks. Doesn't this look like the perfect spot for a picnic on a Spring day? Tomorrow this will be a rest stop for the Lancaster Country Ride that is sponsored by the Greater Dallas Bicyclist. I rode their 46 mile route a couple of years ago, but will have to miss it again this year because of some other committments. It is a really well managed rally with some great roads through bluebonnet fields if you ever get a chance to participate in it.
I love to see Old Glory paint the breeze, even if she is a little tattered. I've got some friends in Palmer that I'm pretty sure will donate a new flag to replace this one next week.
I carried a light lunch, but I was tempted to leave it on the bike and go to Jenny's Cafe. Jenny's has real good food, and on Friday nights the place is packed with patrons enjoying the food and the live, local entertainment. It's almost like, karoke, but it is a live band that apparently can play just about anything you want to sing. Check it out some Friday night!
Looking East and West down FM 878 or Jefferson Street, one of the main streets through town. This really is small town America.
Just South of the downtown area are these two charming old buildings, the First Baptist Church and the Griffith/Blocker home. The church is very active, and recently built a new building for their child care ministry. Mrs. Frances Ann Blocker lived in this home for years until she passed away a few years ago. I remember Mrs. Blocker as one who was very proud of her community and very interested in its historic preservation.
This is a photo of Wester Insurance and Real Estate. James Wester started this agency many years ago, and now my friend Jerry Wester thinks he runs it. James is still there most every day though, so I figure he is still in charge, but humors Jerry by letting him THINK he runs the agency!
Leaving the Palmer Metropolitan Area, you might be able to tell it is an uphill trip back to Ennis, and against the prevailing Southerly winds. This is where it becomes a training ride more than a joy ride. I averaged 15mph going the 7.5 miles to Palmer, and my average speed when I got home was just over 12mph. You can do the math and figure out how much difference uphill and against the wind make on a bicycle. It is still a lot of fun, though!