Marina bike project Marina Del Rey and Venice, California
As I cruised up the coast from Los Angeles to MDR on the Western Flyer, I couldn’t believe how cold it was, just a short distance offshore. Before too long I was in snivel gear and found myself running the boats heater. Snivel gear in my day was what soldiers referred to as anything used to keep warm. “Shut up and quit complaining about the cold”. For me today a wind breaker did the trick. By firing up the heater I also did not mean the diesel fired one as that one is reserved for some really cold Inside Passage type Alaskan weather. The autopilot maintained a good course all the way up, so I found myself taking it all in and before too long, the boat felt like the perfect fit.
A low of 58 reported on land with a high of 69 at Marina del Rey upon arrival, and if you are wondering; a blistering 3.5 hours later I arrive, roughly 33 miles. Average boat speed was 7 knots equating to 9.2 mph. Docked for the night at Burton Chase Park where guest docks with a commanding view of the main channel are $46 per night. Upon arrival and lining up for my approach to the empty guest slips, the wind pushed the boat enough from the stern to determine which empty slip I should take. The park office is open from 8 to 8 p.m. and check in is pretty straight forward.
Plenty of places to eat but non too close, unless you really like to walk. Enter my on board mountain bike. This 20+ year old Specialized mountain bike has taken me coast to coast. From the southernmost points of key west to the Mexican baja. Every race you can imagine including death valley, palm springs, rosarito to Ensenada; and when my old friend Chuck converted her to a street bike we rode 300 miles in one day, Malibu to as far north as Paso Robles.
My day one bike ride to Venice beach, stopping off on Washington street before the Venice pier (El Tarasco) for a great Pescado (fish) burrito and a tamarindo soda. Across the street is Thomas Hamburgers where you can also buy great Mexican food and hand battered fish and chips. These two are local affordables unlike the majority of other tourist fine dining establishments.
Today for lunch it was garlic pizza and a Jarisco soda at Roy’s on the Venice strip where I sat on the sandy grass bluff watching the filming of a movie. Seems that everyone watching the scene wanted to get in on the scene. One guy as he bicycled by yelled out, you better include the homeless in that movie you’re making, and he is right.
Venice is a place i too would come to, if you ever found me homeless. Today, while pretending to be homeless I also obtained my free medical marijuana card, got pierced and a tattoo of the Western Flyer, all in one sitting. And then in my mind I lifted with Arrrrrnold and the muscle beach crowd, before I got bored I also skate boarded for a little while, before my turn at the paddle board court.
While you were working this Wednesday. Every direction I looked were adults playing! Surfers on the water, then the next layer were the sun bathers, followed by the volleyball crowd and boot camp people shouting words of encouragement, and this is just till the end of the sand line. Swing sets for adults too.
What I confused for the homelessness crowd could’ve really been just exercised, flat worn out adults, now sleeping it off or napping it off, till their next exercise session. Napping here was truly out for me, lest I find myself bikeless or shoeless. Enter my new purchase, a kryton lock at Helen’s bike shop on Lincoln. The guy that sold me the lock says that if I lose my bike because the lock fails I get $1500 from krypton. The lock is so good the first time I used it to use the bathroom I couldn’t get it unlocked. The key goes into a tumbler that has got to be rotated just right to open.
In the $10 per hour parking lot I find a guy practising his nightly routine act of throwing three frisbees in the air all at once and then catching all three before they fell, all this while riding his mountain bike. Now this guy was impressive. As were all the tourists of all nations and countries I saw today that like and visit Venice. Most walked but a good many opted for rental bikes.