Friday, November 1, 2013

What the heck is #Coffeeneuring??

I freaking love Twitter.

I love all social media, to be honest. I'm a talky person (I am sure you're shocked to learn this) and I love projects and sharing information with people who think about the same kinds of things. My Facebook group of friends is diverse and wonderful, but it's through Twitter that I can really explore my feelings and experiences with money management, simple living, decluttering, and bicycles.

And so, through Twitter, I found Mary G. of @coffeeneur. I mentioned her in last week's post. She started this fantastic DC-based project called "coffeeneuring" after reading about it online (another person started the term; but it is my understanding that Mary is the one who really ran with it). There are something like 19 rules, but they boil down to these essentials:

  1. Within a fairly short period of time (around 8 weeks?), visit 7 coffee shops.
  2. They must be different coffee shops.
  3. You must ride your bicycle.
  4. The total (round-trip) ride must exceed 2 miles.
  5. You must take a photo of your drink, which must be coffee, tea, hot cocoa, or cider.
  6. The rides must take place on a Saturday or Sunday, some holidays, or your days off, but shall not exceed two per week.

She sets it up as a challenge, and if you send photographic evidence and a brief description of your experience and the length of your route, you get something as a prize. I don't know what the something is, but I seized upon this as an opportunity to keep riding as the days shorten and as I evaluate my bike commute's place in shorter, colder days (remember, I'm pretty new to this, and still figuring all of this out).

I joined halfway through the challenge, and so must ride every single available weekend day between now and Sunday, November 17, in order to complete the challenge and win. So as soon as we returned from a family trip to the Lake of the Ozarks, I hopped on Fleur, and we moseyed to St. Louis Bread Co (mostly because I was sure it would be open on a Sunday evening), arriving home just as the light had started to fade. 

 It was a great experience! I timed myself through MapMyRide, which is one of my favorite apps. The time shown includes my time at the coffee shop. 

  • Shop 1 of 7.
  • Total (round-trip) route: 5.3 miles. 
  • My drink was a venti chai tea latte.
  • The best part about my ride was: powering up a hill I had to walk up last time. Also, this tiny older gentleman spent about 45 seconds ogling my bike when he left the shop, and Fleur was totally flattered.
  • The worst part about my ride was: powering up a hill I had to walk up last time. I also forgot to get one of those stick-in-the-coffee-hole plastic doohickeys, and my yellow purse is now pretty dirty. My suede wedges also need to be clean, and so does Fleur's front basket. Will have to address these things before Saturday's ride...

  • I sure hope to complete the challenge. I am a total project-addict (did I mention that already?) and next month will be a busy one. I've just come off a minimalist game, where I decluttered one thing for each day # of the month (1 thing day 1, 31 things day 31) for a total of 496 items purged. I need to get the donate-able/sellable/specially-recyclable stuff to the right places and reclaim my dining room because tomorrow is also the start of NaNoWriMo! This writing project will be eating my life alive for the next 30 days so my posting and riding will probably reflect it, though I picked up coffeeneuring specifically with the idea that I could ride to a coffee shop with the computer and write for a nice block of time while maintaining interests outside of crazy-frantic-novel-writing.

    If this intrigues you , by all means try it out, just for fun, and if you're on Twitter, follow Mary and "compete" the next time there's a challenge! 

    Cheers and happy riding!

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