While the ride was not scheduled to start until 10:30, there was a pre-ride plan to meet up for breakfast at 8 AM at the regular Monday cyclist breakfast meetup at Lazy Mike's in Falls Church. However, the day dawned with a passing band of rain - drizzly and grey. I wasn't really keen on riding several miles in that stuff and then being wet all day, so I decided to skip breakfast and wait out the rain - Judd decided to do the same, by the way.
So, having gotten up in time to get to breakfast at 8 AM, I found myself with some time on my hands. I got involved in working on my taxes and before I knew it I was running a little late getting out the door for the ride. As I hustled down the Custis Trail towards DC a convoy of more intrepid riders who had decided to do breakfast despite the rain caught up with me. This put me at ease about getting there on time, and we all rode together and made it downtown on time.
|Getting ready at the Lincoln Memorials|
Our meeting point and first stop was the Lincoln Memorial. Illinois is, after all, the "Land of Lincoln". From there we continued to the site of the original building of the Veterans Administration, which Judd (a VA employee) told us was founded in the wake of the Civil War - and thus has a connection to both Lincoln and Grant (who apparently lived in Illinois at some point in his life). I suspect, though, that this is some sort of Fake News, since the Veterans Administration web site says that the various agencies which ultimately were consolidated into the VA weren't founded until much later.
From there we continued to the spot where John Hinckley, Jr. attempted to assassinate Reagan, who apparently also lived in Illinois for a time (why do people shoot all these Illinoisians?). We learned the term "erotomania", which refers to a delusion where a person (say, Hinckley) believes that another person (say, Jodie Foster) is in love with them - or will fall in love with them if they, for example, assassinate the president.
The weather had remained cool and misty so we took a needed snack/warm-up/bathroom break at Glen's Garden Market, after which we continued on to Grant Circle, a rare circle in DC which has no statue (and which intersects with Illinois Avenue!).
|Hey, get out of the middle of the street, you idiot!|
We attempted to ride by the Obamas' home in the Kalorama neighborhood, but the street is blocked by the Secret Service. We could get only to the end of the block and peer down the street to see the house. By the way, it turns out that the Obamas, Jared & Ivanka, and Jeff Bezos all live in the same neighborhood. That must make for some fun block parties!
|The group at the Lincoln Cottage|
Our final stop was the Lincoln Cottage, which served as President Lincoln's summer getaway while he was President. Some folks were going to tour the museum there (which turned out not to be possible that day) and then go out for lunch, but others headed home. I rode home with three other riders - Anne, Nadine, and Cynthis - who were all going approximately to my neighborhood. Safely back at home, I had a bowl of soup to warm myself up and reflected on a nice ride.