Spent a wonderful day on the I&M Canal path. Hubby and I started out from LaSalle and rode to Ottawa where we had lunch at an ice cream shop. Because my tooth/gum issue has reared its ugly head again, I stuck with a vanilla milkshake. Hubby had a decked out hotdog and onion rings. We then headed back to LaSalle. We hadn't gone more than a quarter mile when we saw a cheese/deli shop. The promise of fudge spurred us to turn off and check out the place. Unfortunately the fudge was gone, but Hubby was able to get some farmer's cheese, and I found a coffee I wanted to try. We started out again, making our way back to Utica where we found a candy/fudge shop. We left with a quarter pound each of peanut butter chocolate fudge, Belgian chocolate fudge, cheesecake fudge, and toffee chocolate fudge. Hubby felt drawn to try out the chocolate covered bacon but couldn't bring himself to actually buy a strip and follow through. From there we cycled back to LaSalle, passing the locks no longer in use.
The entire ride we just ambled. No hurry. Enjoying the ruins of the canal, the bridges no longer in use, the tree lined path, the swamps on both sides, the quiet, a white heron, a bull frog with just its eyes above the water of the canal as if it was peeking out at the world (I think snapping a pic of the frog would have given me the pic of the day, but I didn't stop and didn't turn around to try and get it. Next time, if there is a next time, I will stop.).
After the ride, we went to a bike shop, the kind of shop I wish I could visit and hang out in every single day. In addition to the bikes, the gear, and the accessories, this shop had bike artwork. I wandered around the store, admiring the different sculptures and functional furniture created from bike parts. Perhaps this was one reason I walked out with a new mountain bike. Not only was it obvious the owner loved selling bikes and all things connected to cycling, but he also loved creating art from recycled bike parts, breathing new life into old bike parts and pieces.
Now I look forward to riding my new bike on the I&M, going farther, finding new haunts, and stopping for the small things, like bull frog eyes peering out at the world going by.