Adventure 13 – Gersbach and Wind Turbines

Yes! This Sunday I went on a solid 3h bike ride with a friend. We cycled up almost 600 meters to Gersbach which made for a fast and fun decent on the way home.

Here's a view from about half way up.

Only a couple months ago wind turbines were installed by Gersbach.

We decided to take a closer look.

These things are truly impressive. They had a 115m rotor diameter and were over 200 meters high in total. They look so innocent from afar, but the speed of the rotor tip is over 30m/s.

Overall it was remarkably easy cycling uphill with the racing bike. But greater than the ease was the pleasure. It's a totally different feel. Am sure this won't be my last trip if this kind.

Adventure 12 – the Dreiländereck

This week I took my new set of wheels out for a spin. It was already late Saturday afternoon, not even an hour before sunset, but I knew it would do me good. I was tired too, but the kind of tired that sitting at home won't fix.

I loved it. My racing bike weighs less than half of the old one and is so much fun to ride. I was flying at first. But I don't (yet?) have the endurance to keep up that pace.

Rivers are beautiful too. I had never been at the point where the Wiese runs into the Rhein. It was great, especially with the red evening skies.

Just north is the Dreiländereck. That is where France, Switzerland, and Germany meet. It's also a nice spot with a landmark and bridge to France just north.

I'm sure this is only only the first trip with many still to come.

Adventure 11 – An Impulse Buy a Year in the Making

This weekend I had the ideal Adventure 52 trip. Okay, maybe some mountain views were missing to warrant an “ideal” rating, but it was special nonetheless. From the adventure standpoint it wasn’t the most exciting but it reminded me on many levels of why I’m doing this.

I was tired on Saturday after a late birthday party the night before. I slept in and decided to make some pancakes. The sun was shining outside and I figured I’d go out later but was caught up in season three of Chef’s Table on Netflix.

That’s dangerous and precisely the reason I’m wanting to get out every weekend. I’m one who can get himself to do a lot based on principle alone and know that a couple hours outside will do me a world of good. Not simply because fresh air, sunshine and perhaps some exercise are healthy, but because trips are much more memorable and stimulating than sitting at home.

Who knows when or if I would have gotten out the door had not a friend come by at two. He asked what I was doing inside during such great weather and said I should join him on a quick bike tour. He only had an hour.

I was out a couple minutes later and we did a short tour. He reminded me again that I had wanted to get a racing bicycle. A couple months ago I had borrowed his for an impromptu tour and really enjoyed it. Not only was it good fun, but it would certainly cut a decent time off my commute.

It was now or never. After he left I figured I’d go into Lörrach and see what I could find. I had put it off for far too long, only occasionally looking into eBay offers. That was the problem though, I knew nothing about bikes. How would I be able to judge a bike I found? And I didn’t want to pay the €1000+ Euros for a decent new one.

Not even two hours later I sent my friend this:

A salesperson at the store I went to had, after confirming their bikes start at €1000+, remembered he had a used one in the basement. It was actually one he had personally bought off a customer and would fit me perfectly. He brought it up and offered it to me at over 100€ less than I had said my budget was. What’s more, he would fix it up and do full maintenance on it before selling it to me. I could pick it up Thursday or Friday.

I couldn’t believe my luck and left the store with that feeling of “did that just happen.” As with most of my big purchases, I think a lot about it beforehand. I had first thought of getting a new bike over a year ago. So this was far from your classical impulse buy.

Inspired, I rode out the following day for a picknick and walk in the sun. Here’s a picture from that day.

I’m ready for summer now and boy am I looking forward to it!

 

Adventure 10 – The Morgenstraich

Once a year the city of Basel gets up in the middle of the night, turns off the city lights, and people walk through the streets in lantern-light to drums beating and flutes playing.

That is the Morgenstraich and it was this Monday.

It is part of the Basler Fastnacht (Carnival of Basel) and the start of the drey scheenschte Dääg ("three most beautiful days").

I went with some friends from Uni. It was good fun and definitely worth the trip. There's something about the hustle and bustle of lots of people in a city that I enjoy.

At exactly 4:00 in the morning all the street lights in the inner city are turned off. The cliques played their Guggenmusik and marched through the streets with festively decorated lanterns.

Here are some pictures. But be prepared for some of the most pixelated shots you've seen in a long time. It was dark.

Bellow is the Mehlsuppe that is traditionally eaten during the Morgenstraich. Upon googling I found it translates to "gruel". It doesn't taste much better than it looks or sounds. That is simply part of the genuine experience.