Posts Tagged With: biking


DSC08170 (Copy)It is never the order of things that Stuart and Dolores (Quyle) Mast, or any parent should outlive their child.

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Sorrow and loss pinched hundreds of faces at the hilltop service at Quyle’s ranch, the property where Robbie Mast grew up, but there was something else there.

DSC08162 (Copy)The unquenchable spirit of Robbie himself, who left an indelible print on the wide world around him in his short 25 years.

DSC08165 (Copy)Principal of Avery Middle School, Michael Chimente, reminded us of his leadership role, as honor student, class president as a sixth grader and a young high school student who applied to be Principal at Bret Harte High School.

DSC08168 (Copy)The gang of six friends he grew up with helped us relish the humor, the mischief, the love of nature, beauty and friendship he brought into focus for them. Robbie liked to ride a bike, but he wanted to build bikes and ride around the world. It took him twenty-two months from New Zealand, Thailand, Singapore, Istanbul, Bulgaria, Italy, France and England. As the son of  wine makers, he worked in vineyards wherever he went; volunteered at a self-sustaining farm and spiritual center. He touched people;  made friends; took lessons home with him.

DSC08166 (Copy)Ryan Anderson and Bryan Hitchcock, two older friends, remarked how Robbie came to them and said he’d signed himself out of Gym in High School. He preferred hiking and biking and camping and nature. They convinced Bret Harte that he had engaged in private Boxing lessons in place of Gym and he was allowed to graduate with his class. Robbie hungered to invent, to explore, to challenge himself, to enjoy life with humor. He was an artist,  an actor, a story-teller. Wise beyond his years, he made every second of his life meaningful.  DSC08164 (Copy)Each speaker revealed another dimension to Robbie’s  life.  In his own words, from eighth grade, “Life is a journey…judge not…help those less fortunate…stop and smell the roses…never be content…question and wonder…people are good…love is the strongest force in the universe…life goes fast…live like every day was your last…

If you see a shining  star never let it fade away.

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My bike hangs off the back of the Bronco. Jim’s was attached to the Motorhome ladder. He never felt like hauling his bike down, so I rode alone around the grounds or nearby streets where we camped. But, with two years of little use, and the salt air from the East Coast, my bike was deteriorating very quickly. He removed his in Connecticut and gave it to his son. I removed mine yesterday.DSC01732 (Copy)

We took it in to a bike shop in Angels Camp for a tune-up. It needed new derailleurs, grips,peddles and brake pads. Because I have had one bike stolen off the back of the Bronco,  I painted out the Trek brand name, kept a beat up old seat on it and used two locks with a stronger cable. Pain in the butt every time you want to ride.

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I was surprised and pleased at this small town bike shop. The owner is very knowledgeable and helpful. He doesn’t overcharge. In fact, he recommended against needless cosmetic touch-ups, and suggested just taking care of the riding elements. Nice guy.

I’m anxious to try it out since I can now walk a brisk mile, maybe I can ride without a problem. At home. Biking while on the road is a thing of the past. We tried several covers to protect the bike, none worked without obscuring the drivers vision. So….we’ll see. I’m remembering how much fun it was to ride the canals in Yuma, and…well, it is an option.




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We all have to shop. I’m one of those who hates shopping, for anything. But, when I’m with my grandkids, I love shopping because I can spoil them rotten. They never ask, but I prompt them, wouldn’t you like some ice cream? Maybe we should rent a movie?  I let Owen be my GPS and guide me to their favorite market, The Nugget. If you must shop, and if the place is artistic, all the better in my opinion.

Very few grocery stores have statues along the roof line carrying bowls of fruit on their heads. Gorgeous. Costly.

Instead of ugly plastic bins for recycling, an artist was commissioned to provide a cover-up, highly attractive and valuable as a work of art. I loved it. I should have thought to take pictures inside the store as well. People were relaxing, drinking a coffee at an in-store Starbucks and enjoying a pastry. I could easily see myself moving in with my easy chair and a book and staying for  the day watching people  and snacking periodically. Oh, yea!  If you must shop, do it at The Nugget style. They had stuff I had never heard of.

We tarried outside to listen to the street musicians. Owen knows the ropes. “Do you have some change Grandma?”  He put the money in the hat.

Then, I got GPSed all the way home. “Straight ahead. Slow for next intersection. Signal now…” Such a deal. Owen learning to drive by sight.

After dinner, Theo continued teaching his mother how to play Yugio, a complicated game of cards that  she struggles to learn. This was  her third lesson and she is slowly getting it,  a game the boys play swiftly with their friends all the time. I was glad it was her and not me. I remember when I realized my kids were smarter than me. Payback time is at hand.

My trip involved an appointment with  orthopedic surgeon Meehan,  in Sacramento. Good news, no surgery needed, but about six months for my hip to heal so I can go back to hiking, walking and biking. Right now, I’m limping but slowly getting better. Life is good.



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