Bike Shop Stop: Coast in Bikes

I wish I wrote about this shop earlier while the thoughts were fresher. Coast in Bikes is located in a cute area of Milwaukee called Walker’s Point. Most of the businesses in this area are small and cater to the locals. It’s the sort of town where the local cheese guy trades his cheese to the local bike shop, and in return local cheese guy borrows the cargo bike for the day to make cheese deliveries (true story, met both parties). Coast in Bikes is probably  one of the neatest and NICEST (as in NICE people) shop I’ve ever been to. Walking up to the store, a handsome custom handmade cargo bike was parked right out front (I don’t know why I would ever need a cargo bike, but man, oh man, do I want one).  I knew I was in good hands. The store was set up towards the front of the space, with Surly and Linus bikes lining the floor and walls. The repair area was towards the middle/back of the shop. And the coffee shop, yes, coffee shop was tucked away in the back. No frills, just a beat up couch, and an open kitchen that came right out of your moms house. I walked to the back just to look around and ran into one of the co-owners French pressing a cup of coffee for herself. From there we talked for probably 20min about the Surly she’s building up for the summer and the versatility of the frames. Mentioned that I was looking into getting an All-City and then proceeded to talk more about those frames, and what it was like to commute in Milwaukee (SO sorry to Dex and Kai about the detour). She also mentioned that she ran this women’s cycling club/team thing to empower women on bicycles.  Overall, 2 thumbs way up and bravo to the enthusiastic duo running this shop!



New Gear: GSC x Intelligentsia Cycling Cap

New digs came in the mail today! Had to take the nifty new cap out for  a nice evening ride. It’s been a challenging few weeks, so in order to blow off some steam I went searching for hills to stomp and downhills to bomb. The Golden Saddle Cyclery cap is designed beautifully and mopped up my sweat like a sponge. I sweat like a horse and I’ve come to the conclusion that I look like an idiot in cycling caps, but hey, they do the job.

Cheers, and happy riding.

Bike Shop Stop: The Bike Rack

On my way to Dupont, I stopped in at this neighborhood bike shop off of Q and 14th. Real neat set up and look. I was in to snag a new rear blinker to temporarily replace my Blackburn Flea 2.0. Perk about the Flea 2.0 is that it’s USB chargeable, ultra compact, lightweight and super bright with a few different settings to choose from. Downside is the charger is a small separate piece…about 3/4 the size of my pinky, and didn’t charge my backlight unless I wiggled the charger to a certain position. Even then, it wouldn’t completely charge. Bummer, because the Flea 2.0 costs around $30. I emailed Blackburn informing them of my dilemma and on the bright side Blackburn is kindly sending me a brand new rear light this week! Hopefully it’ll work better the 2nd time around.

Still in need of a rear blinker for the night, I left shop with the Giant Numen Mini Taillight (thanks to the front guy who looked stoned). The Numen Mini reminds me of the Knog silicone lights (which I like), 2 settings, battery powered…overall great for what I needed it for. While waiting for the green light on 16th and R, a cream colored Ford pulled up next to me. Didn’t think anything of it until I heard “TATIANA!”, I gingerly turn my head and what do you know! My theater friend from high school who I haven’t seen since graduation (2006) was waving at me hysterically. Turns out, she’s in town doing Show Boat at the Kennedy Center. After an awesome 40 second conversation, off we went. Eight minutes later (precision!), as I locked up, I hear another “TATIANA!”…I clasped the lock, look up, and another theater friend from high school swaggers up to me for a hug. Turns out he’s back from LA, and spending the summer in DC. Small world. Small DC. Or maybe there’s a high school theater troupe reunion that I wasn’t invited to.

Oh the places you’ll go and the people you’ll run into!  Safety first! More to come… happy riding.

PS – I didn’t mean for this post to be a safety light review and life preservation post. But there ya go.