Monday, June 29, 2015

Austin Frankenbike Swap

Last weekend, the family took a quick trip to Austin to visit friends, and visit Austin's Frankenbike bike swap. It was the 10th anniversary, and there was live music and an oyster bar, as well as beer since it was held at the Independence Brewing Company. With Austin's purported strong bike culture, I was excited to see a big turnout with lots of mountain biking bits and bobs to look at. 

I don't know if it was the possibility of rain in the forecast, or that Frankenbike is held monthly, but most of the people there were vendors, and I didn't really see many other bikers around. I also expected there to be a wider variety of bike gear, but mostly people had things that were geared towards road cycling, townie bikes, or cross bikes. There wasn't much in the mountain bike realm, but we did find a few interesting things. 

Neva found this bike.  It reminded me a little bit of the banana seat bike I had when I was a kid, though mine was much bigger and had tassels on the handlebars. This bike also had solid tires, so you don't get flats, but it sure was heavy. 

It took Neva a few go-arounds to get used to it, but she quickly adapted, and overall enjoyed her first cruiser bike experience. 

I also found a "bike". It's called a Skate Bike.  It's like a unicycle with training wheels, except the training wheels come from the truck of a skateboard with skateboard wheels. 

I liked it.

And with the seat all the way down, Neva can almost ride it.  Maybe next year sweetie. 

We also saw this bike with 24" wheels, eyelets on the single post seat stay, and a crazy shifting/braking set up. Way cool. 

This one was an old Raleigh folder bike, possibly for commuting around in a big city. 

By today's standards, it may be considered bulky and heavy, but it has all the functions of a city folder, set up with a rear rack, 20" tires, and a quick release fold right in the center of the bike. 

This bike's wheels were about as tall as Neva!  I'm not sure who this bike is meant for, but it sure was fun to look at!

Okay, I know this is a terrible shot, but I think it was a shot Neva accidentally took when holding my phone. I didn't realize I had the picture, but wanted to spread the word of our new bike friend. This is Davis Tucker, and he had a booth called "Don't Fear the Finger". It is in reference to spreading awareness about prostate cancer, and to remind men to get checked out regularly.  This is their logo : 


Bryce helped put together a sponsorship ride called 1400 miles, where you bike from Austin to Denver (which is 1400 miles) in 14 days (100 miles a day), and all proceeds go to prostate cancer awareness and research. Bryce was very laid back, and had a friendly smile on his face during our entire conversation. It was refreshing to talk to another tourer at the bike swap. 

And you can't go to Austin without enjoying the delicious food. It's one of those towns where you could blindfold yourself, spin around, and throw a rock, and hit a tasty food establishment (um, don't try doing that, please). After a warm day at the swap, we joined friends at Dimassi's Mediterranean Buffet. It was the first place I'd ever been that actually had a salad bar packed with real salads! Tabouli, cucumber salad, avocado salad, and greek salad, oh my!  Not to mention all of the other delicious fare that you would normally see, hummus, babaganoush, falafel, yellow rice, a bunch of meat stuff, and of course, baklava. 

Wait, did I mention it was a buffet.  Yeah, all you can eat for $13. We hit the pescatarian family jackpot. (And yes, they had baked fish there too).

Here is my (ahem, first) heaping plate of food filled with salads, dolmas, baked cauliflower, fish, rice, eggplants, and baba. Yummy!  Note : not all Dimassi's are created equally.  I hear that some of the locations in Dallas don't quite meet up to the standards of the Austin location. 

I also must talk about our friendly hosts who graciously took us in last-minute. This is Danielle holding our dog Sammie.  Yes, Danielle is always that cheerful, and her smile is wonderfully infectious. We miss you guys!

So, what did we take home from the swap? 2 shirts for me, including a super cool reflective shirt, 2 tri shirts for my training friend Laurie (you guys remember her), a triangle bag for the new tandem, 2 bottle cages, white and pale green, to match Christian's new bike, 1 kids wireless odometer/speedometer for Neva when she's biking around the neighborhood, and I may have gotten the skate bike...all for the whopping total of $65!

Oh, and a guy just handed me these at the bike swap, saying his wife wanted them to be given to someone.  A "new" pair of Birkenstocks for me!

I'm excited to get the KT all put together.  Here is a taste of what the new bag looks like on. We have some last minute gear coming from the Bike Bag Shop, my old place of business, and we still have to install the cranks, but hopefully we will have something set up to show everyone this weekend. I'm also still planning our route, and will have news of our rough route soon so you can give us a shout out if we will be in your area.  Write to you all soon!

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