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Our World – Tour de Tulsa 2019

Your de Tulsa

So Saturday morning found me in Tulsa’s Tour de Cure, a benefit ride sponsored by the Tulsa Bicycle Club. They have five rides varying in length between eight and 101 miles. This is a ride rather than a race. So there is no competition or awards or any of that. I’ve run literally dozens of runs but this was only my second ride. There starting gun. Everybody is just standing around talking and then they start going.

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Today’s ride was a ride of left turns in traffic starting right away. At least the first one we had traffic control with the police. The rest of them we were on our own.

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So we cruised down Southwest Boulevard (aka Route 66) for a bit, taking up both lanes.

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And then turned right over the railroad tracks and got on Avery Drive heading west past the refineries, trash to energy plants, oilfield fabrication shops. Avery Drive is a popular ride for bicyclists which is great but some of them get run off the road or hit every few years but angry or distracted people. My prayer was just to survive it.

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No worries though. The motorists were courteous and gave us lots of room. So I’ll live to ride it another day. My problem is that I ride almost exclusively trails on my own. Roads make me nervous.

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I got stressed when Avery drive ended and we had to do two left turns to negotiate the very busy high 97 and 51 intersections. No choice but to get in the left turn lane and ignore the freight truck behind me, twice.

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So after all that we got to a rest stop. Time to get something to drink and a snack and rest a little bit. That’s me, the fat guy with the white over blue shirt or jersey.

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And here is my old bike. You don’t see too many hybrid bikes on rides like this. Or bikes with rear view mirrors and a bell. Don’t you laugh at me!!

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And then back to it and we ended up winding our way through downtown Sand Springs. I was able to keep a few riders in front of me and they seemed to know the route because I didn’t see any obvious course markings or signs or anything.

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And we ended up on the Katy Trail that went most of the way back to Tulsa. No more city streets except the last mile or so.

The end is pretty low key. Since they don’t time or have awards, you just end your ride. Get something to eat and drink and go home.

I really enjoyed myself. Thank you to the sponsors, and organizers, and the army of volunteers who make these things happen.

I am linking with Our World Tuesday

ABC Wednesday – “Q” is for Quonset Hut!

Daycare center close to downtown Tulsa

The ubiquitous Quonset Hut was developed by the US Navy during World War II to fill their need for lightweight portable multipurpose buildings that could be moved anywhere and assembled quickly with unskilled labor. 150,000 plus were built during the war and many of the sold to the public after the war. They seem to be everywhere in a multitude of uses.

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An almost hidden hut just off the Riverwalk in San Antonio. I think it used to be a dance hall but am not sure.

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A storage building in Flandreau, South Dakota.

I am linking with ABC Wednesday

Our World – Tulsa’s Woodward Park

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Saturday, my wife Heather and I went to Tulsa’s Woodward Park. I wanted to check out the Azaleas. That’s Heather above with her hands on her hips like she is ready to do something. She is always ready to pitch in!

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The Azaleas were nice but not like last year but we loved it anyway. Above is a photo using my lensball. It is a spherical piece of glass that I keep in my car. It sure makes for nice photos, once I learned how to use it. One trick is that most of my photos with are inverted since it inverts the scene in front of it.

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Here is a two tone photo of Azaleas in the shade. I have learned how to do manual exposure and blah, blah, blah with my camera but I forgot to set the white balance to shade and it is hard (for me) to correct for that after the fact. Oh well, I’ll take it anyway.

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The Linnaeus Demonstration Gardens at Woodward Park had a butterfly garden. Heather had her notebook out and was making notes. I think we might have one in the near future.

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Woodward Park had some iris’s also. I love them!!

We saw lots of flowers, and stopped and chatted with a couple from out of town who asked about what to see in Tulsa. A great time was had by all!!

I am linking with with Our World Tuesday

A Windy Sunny Oklahoma Spring

I was way south of Tulsa on the banks of the Arkansas River chasing a geocache when I stopped by how beautiful it was around me. The wind was howling and the trees were blowing. The river looked wild and unconstrained like the prairie braided river it is. I was out in the middle of nowhere and it felt great. It was a real Spring day in Oklahoma.

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I got back to my car and took this photo. The skies were spectacular.

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A few days before I was in a park in east Tulsa and we had some very blue skies and big ole fluffy white clouds. And a huge wind. Notice how green everything is!

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The Full Pink Moon!!

As you can tell, I am really loving our Spring.

I’m linking with Skywatch Friday

Building a Monarch Waystation at Work

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Last week a group of volunteers at work along with some people from A New Leaf put in a Monarch Waystation at our office in downtown Tulsa. I missed it because it was my day off.

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There are guidelines to creating a Monarch Waystation. Click the link to find out what they are. All sorts of people and organizations are doing making them to help the Monarch Butterflies during their migration.

And here is a video from National Geographic about how to build one yourself. This is one gardening trend that I can get behind.

2019 Sequoyah Gravel Run 10K

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This past Sunday I drove an hour southeast of Tulsa to Oklahoma’s Sequoyah State Park to run the inaugral Sequoyah Gravel Run 10K. They also had 5K and 15K races as well and earlier had bicycling events.

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It had been raining the day before but Sunday it was sunny, and kind of cold and windy actually. Perfect conditions for running in other words. They sent us off and away we went.

I ran with Paula and Misti. This is the third race we have run together. We all kind of go at the same pace so it works out well.

There were only a few really muddy spots on the course, all easily circumvented. An environmentally conscious runner always goes right through the mud to avoid damaging the non-trail segments. And then there is me who hates running with cold wet socks. Sorry, true confessions time.

You have to look close but we came upon some riders on horses. That was cool.

Another muddy spot, nope I didn’t splash through this puddle either. Sorry.

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And the finish line. Me in the middle, Paula to my right, Misti in the blue, a friend of theirs in yellow, and the legendary Trail Zombie, aka Ken Childress, on my far right. Ken is not only a great trail runner but a very generous and kind guy as well. He has directed so many races and helped a lot of people out in the sport.

We finished third and fourth males on the race so we got to share the podium also.

I give Kudos to the organizers of the race.

  • Great trails – It had rained the whole day before but the trails were in great shape with just a few really bad puddles. (Not their fault right). The park was beautiful and the trails in good shape.
  • They didn’t have a ton of trail markers but they had a couple dozen people on the course making sure nobody got lost.
  • They had a couple aid stations with plenty of supplies.
  • Beer – Craft beer from Heirloom Rustic Ales at the end, plus a complimentary glass to put it in. That will make the sustainability people I work with swoon with delight when I tell them that.
  • A nice touch is that everybody got a framed photo of themself at the finish.
  • So I give the race five stars out of five. I’ll be back!!

Thank you to the organizers, the sponsors, and the army of volunteers that it takes to put these events on.

I am linking with Skywatch Friday

Tulsa 2019 Auto Show

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I sneaked off for a little bit today amongst a busy day to check out the Tulsa Auto Show at the Fairgrounds.

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It has considerably downsized in the twenty some years I have been going. People don’t seem as excited about cars as what they used to be.

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I don’t blame them. All the sedans look like Toyota and the truck and SUV’s look alike also.

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The emphasis these days seems to be on technology and other features. My new Subaru is impressive. It has twin cameras installed up by the rear view mirror and they almost drive the car by themself. If I have an excursion they car pulls back into the lane. My car also sends me a monthly email telling me how it is doing. It never asks how I am doing. Maybe the next big thing will be cars with more emotional intelligence. You heard it here first.

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They also have lots of older cars there. I love them. You can actually tell them apart from each other.

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I wonder why don’t see pickups like this any longer?

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I love the Corvairs. Lots of cool technology in these cars. Not because of gee whiz type features but of operational simplicity.

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The new pickup trucks are gigantic but I love the look of the older trucks better. Especially if they have cool two toned paint jobs like this. Look at that grill!

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Anyway, I had a lot of fun. I like car shows. Have you been to one lately?

I am linking with Our World Tuesday!!

Spring Skies in Tulsa

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Spring stepped up this week after weeks of cold. And so I took my bike on the RiverParks Trails after work. Here is a shadow selfie of me on my fifteen year old Giant at work.

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A little sunset action on the west bank of the Arkansas River.

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A view of the soon to be demolished Pedestrian Bridge. The powers that be decided we needed something fancier to fit in with our new Gathering Place Park.

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Same bridge only behind several varieties of redbuds. The white variety is actually still a redbud. Or so I am told.

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More redbuds!! And my old bike. People make fun of my bike because it is very old and heavy and not sleek and I have a bell and a mirror on it. They say get something newer and faster. Why, what is my hurry?

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And Monday, the Tulsa Drillers were playing an 11 am game. Well by gum, I have lots of vacation and a flexible type job so after clearing with my boss I went down a bought a ticket right behind home plate and watched me a baseball game!! No better way to spend a day. Actually if my son and wife with me it could be better. But they hate baseball, so never mind. You like my seat? The guy with the radar gun was six seats to my right. And then I went back to work after watching about six innings. I love daytime games.

Our World – Tulsa Botanic Center Tulips 2019

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I took the day off Friday and wife Heather, and son Logan ventured out north of Tulsa to check out the flowers at the Tulsa Botanic Garden.

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The Tulips are in bloom and are beautiful. I think they planted something like 130,000 bulbs or something like that and they are dazzling especially in full sunlight.

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All sorts of colors and varieties.

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And here is wife Heather! She loves the flowers.

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And son Logan, he is okay with flowers and came along in anticipation of the ice cream to come later.

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And I captured Heather again.

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A few daffodils.

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Thousands of fragrant violas.

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I snuck in my conjuring ball and took a few photos with it.

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You have to really be careful holding it, especially in the full sun because it flat burn a hole in your skin in seconds flat. So I have learned to hold it on the top. I flip most of the pics over anyway. It took me a while to learn how to get decent pics with it. I use a point and shoot in the macro mode and focus on the ball. You can use an SLR or a smart phone and I have but it is kind of clumsy, to me it is anyway.

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I never get tired of the tulips. The Garden has come a long ways over the years. I remember running trail races through the property years ago wondering when were they ever going to get some color out here. Will they have it in a big way now.

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We were out there because it was my birthday. This is my wife of many years, Heather. She spoils me shamelessly.

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Yep 64 years old as of Saturday. I like numbers and 64 is two to the 6th power. I don’t think I’ll make it to two to the seventh years, or 128. For some reason that doesn’t bother me. Ask me if I make it to 127 and I’ll probably be singing a different tune!!

I’m linking with Our World Tuesday

Skywatch Friday – Flowering All Over

Earlier this week I went biking on Tulsa’s Riverparks trails along both sides of the river for about 14 miles total.

I saw my first rowers of the season. They have been absent for a while because their boathouse burned down. They are back in business now. I love watching them. It looks very hard work. Here they are making great progress on against the water flow of the river.

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I stopped near some white bud trees at the base of Turkey Mountain.

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And at what I call the Bear Fountain at the southern end of my ride. Notice the flowing water effect? I use a new photo app called Spectre to get that. It can do that while hand held, no tripod needed although that would be helpful. Note how the rest of the photo is a little fuzzy? I have dozens of photo apps. I have so many I forget about them. How about you, what are your favorites. I use Snapseed the most.

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It was sunset by the time I got back to my car. Wait a minute you are saying, the post title says something about flowers! Sorry, I get distracted. Here are some flowers.

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Tulips at Tulsa’s Woodward Park. I love them.

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I used my macro lens. It takes great pics of flowers, and squirrels, but no squirrel pics today, sorry.

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And this is a little overexposed and then I “fixed” it and then I went back to the original image. It’s good to share our trials and tribulations, right?

And I used my LensBall to get this shot of the ”Appeal to the Great Spirit” sculpture at Woodward Park. I know I may use my conjuring ball too much but I love it. Sorry

And that is it for this week. I had to finish up my post on my iPad and it worked fairly well. I am linking this to Skywatch Friday, which I moderate. Come check us out!