Cycling From Shirlington To Leesburg
Well, we did it! I’m not sure which accomplishment I am most in awe of–being married for 25 years, taking the day off from work despite increasing pressure not to, or cycling 67 miles round trip for our anniversary lunch.
I came up with this plan back in August, when I realized that I would be out of town both the weekend before and the weekend after our anniversary. I knew that if we just took a day off from work, we would be tempted to check emails or do chores around the house unless we did something special. Since we both really enjoy cycling together, spending the day on our bikes sounded like a perfect way to celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary.
We waited until 9:00 am to head out (no need to face rush hour traffic on a day off!) and parked near the start of the Washington & Old Dominion trail in the Shirlington section of Arlington, Virginia. There were a few people on the trail, but it was much emptier than it is on the weekend. Once we were out past Fairfax County, we rode for miles at a time without encountering anyone else.
We got to Leesburg a few minutes before noon. I hadn’t put much (ok, any) thought into where we would eat, and asked my husband how we would find a place for lunch. I was surprised when he said that he had done some research on Google, and had found a few places we could check out. (Yes, even after 25 years his thoughtfulness continues to surprise me!)
The first place turned out to be perfect. It was a little Italian/Greek/Middle Eastern place in a small strip mall–the kind of place that was either really good or really bad. When I saw several tables of people already enjoying lunch, I figured it must be good.
It had a little gazebo out front, squeezed onto a small plot of grass between the parking spaces and the sidewalk. There was one table under the gazebo–perfect for a sweaty couple celebrating their 25th wedding anniversary!
And, the food was good! I had a falafel sandwich that really hit the spot!
My Garmin 410 was flakey at the start of our ride, so I only have Garmin data for the ride back. It is interesting to see that the first 8 miles (the last 8 miles on this graph) are basically uphill. I do always feel sluggish when we start at the Shirlington end of the Washington & Old Dominion trail, and this helps explain way.
That sharp peak at about mile 25 on this graph is at mile marker 15 on the trail, and ends right at a stop sign. I hate that hill. I am still a little bit afraid of that hill. But I am facing that hill and getting stronger every time I reach the top.
How do you make sure you spend time with your husband/wife/boyfriend/girlfriend?
Do you have a favorite restaurant that might look like a dive?