We’re now less than two weeks away from our trip. Derek booked our bus tickets to Montreal yesterday and our hotel for the first night in Amsterdam while I was staining the front porch.
With the help of our dear friend Ron (who rode his motorbike all the way from Fredericton to help out), we’ve fixed up and painted our house.
The next step is giving away or lending out anything we won’t need like our canoe, our climbing equipment & a few of our extra bikes. Everything else (except for Jasper’s LEGO which his Grandma Barbara has promised to store for him) will get packed up in the basement.
As soon as Anna Sierra saw Ron and his motorbike she asked if I thought she could have a ride. Of course Ron was happy to oblige and when there was a trip to the hardware store needed, off they went. Jasper wasn’t sure kids were allowed to ride motorbikes, but he was happy to help Ron by chipping out old bathtub caulking.
The past week has flown by with house tasks during the day and visits with friends in the evenings, including a special send off from my colleagues at work.
Just when the kids were getting restless with all the painting and packing, it was time for their annual trip to Cambridge to see their Grandma Pat & Grandpa Wayne.
When we first shared the news of our trip with Derek’s parents they were really supportive and promised to visit us in Cuba, but insisted that we not whisk the kids off for a year without their special week together. It’s such a special time for them, with lots of cookie baking, sewing, bike rides and chats.
As the kids raced around the house, checking Grandma’s list and packing everything they’d need for their visit, including tennis racquets to play with Grandma, books and art supplies for the drive and the 7 pairs of underware she recommended, we realized they were bringing more on their week away than we’d have room for on our big trip!
Even with front and back panniers on each of our three bikes, space will be tight. After essentials like rain gear, bike locks, bathing suits, our tent, our sleeping bags, sleeping mats, stove & basic kitchen stuff and a few toiletries, there’s not going to be much room for anything beyond bike shorts, a few changes of clothes and a bar of laundry soap.
I’m currently testing out my favourite skirts to see which one gets to come on the trip. It’s a close tie between a grey linen skirt that served me well on last summer’s ride from Cornwall to Toronto and a pink skirt that I also love.
May I take a moment to celebrate the biking skirt? Whether I actually bike in it or not, it’s so easy to throw on for lunch breaks, shopping breaks, or quick, discreet bathing suit changes if you want to hop off the bike and jump in a lake.
What’s your favourite bike travel gear?
Hope everyone is enjoying great summer adventures!