Sunday, November 04, 2007

Saved by Starbucks in St. Charles

Last weekend was a busy weekend. And so was this one. Finally this morning there was some time to relax and do whatever we wanted. I checked the weather, it looked promising, cool but sunny. The high temp for the day was supposed to reach 51 degrees.

This time of the year, if it's not raining or snowing or in the 30's, it's a good day for a ride. Soon winter will be here. The signs of winter are already here, the days are getting shorter and the temperatures are getting colder. Last night the daylight savings time ended, so today the sun was going to set at 4:45PM, instead of 5:45PM.

Around noon we were ready to ride. There is a road that I’ve wanted to check out for a while just west of the burbs so off we went. But just 30 miles in to the ride I realized that this would not be a very relaxing and fun ride. As I continued riding I was starting to notice two things. One, my Widder electric vest was not warming me up at all and I was becoming really cold. Two, it was really windy today and the further we got away from the burbs the more the wind was blowing, the colder it felt.

Downtown Burlington

Nice little old church

Unfortunately the road I wanted to ride was located about 120 miles from the house, half way there I decided that this road would have to wait for another time, my focus now was to find a nice warm place to grab a cup of tea or coffee and warm up since apparently my Widder vest was broken.

I knew of a place in Genoa that served tea and coffee, and it was only about 6 miles away now. But the place was already closed for the day when we got there. As cold as I was, I passed by the McDonalds looking for something nicer and non-chain. Heading east now, I knew of another coffee house in Wasco, which was also on the way home, but when we arrived there, the place was locked up and there was a ‘for rent’ sign in the door. Two out of two. I wasn't too concerned yet, there was another coffee place only about a mile from here, but you guessed it. This place was also closed. Were we the only people who wanted a cup of coffee on Sunday afternoon, it was only 3PM?

There was only one thing left to do, head home. I’ve been out now for over 3 hours and was pretty chilled and the temperatures were going to stop dropping soon. The road that would get us home, had at least 6 different Starbucks coffee shops on it, they keep opening up new ones all the time. Since we had some time to kill and I was still cold, we stopped at the first one in St. Charles. Of course the winds were dying down now and we were in the burbs, so it was warmer. The spiced pumpkin latte hit the spot and when I got back outside I was no longer cold.

Downtown St. Charles and the Fox River

Looking towards the North Avenue bridge

Named Ekwabet, meaning "watching over" the 15 ft. bronze statue of a Potawatomi Indian on the Fox River

Potawatomi means "people of the place of fire," These Native Americans left an indelible mark on the land here. Many of the main roads that run though the western DuPage and the Fox Valley area are old Potawatomi trails.

Fancy Hotel Baker on the Fox River

A tree's branch heavy with its fruit

Playing in the tall grass

Posing with the old man on the bench in front of the Baker Hotel

Now that I wasn’t freezing anymore, there was no point to go home just yet, so we rode down to the Fox River in St. Charles to walk around for a bit, we pass by here all the time but we never stop to walk around. I think St. Charles is a very nice town, I like a town that has a river running thought it.

After some walking around we headed home. It was dark when we arrived at the house but still it wasn't as cold as it was earlier today.

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