Milwaukee, WI

I have Milwaukee on the mind because I just watched the Brewers suffer a major loss to the Cubs. Just five days before the game, I was riding around the Miller stadium with my host Dave. Who I kept wanting to call Mike, although never did out loud. For some reason I was under the impression the Brewer’s weren’t a good team. But they’re almost evenly matched with the Cubs.

Thursday was decreed a play day, all day. I showed up at the house and spotted it immediately; with a black Stella out front and a nice man drinking coffee and waving at me. Cool.

RIDE WITH THE SHIELDDave was remarkably laid back for a man whose wife was expecting a baby at any minute. We had a full house. His Mom was also visiting. Dave contacted me back in April. I’ve been really excited about exploring all of Wisconsin. After chit chatting for awhile, we zoomed off to see the town. Before leaving, he showed me his Corazzo jacket-only a little hole after a 100ft slide! Amazing!

He’s good to ride with, at stops he lays out the immediate route ahead, turn by turn, punctuated with snippets about the area. He knew when and where I might want to pull over for some photos, which is nice. We wound up at the Ale House for lunch. Wisconsin is known for beer, brats, and cheese. I indulged with all three.

Conversation was thoughtful, playful, political, philosophical and rapid. I’ve been really lucky to meet great people all around the country and lucky that they open up to me right away. When Dave was a kid, he met John Lennon. He actually went to lunch with John and Yoko. I was so excited to hear that, because that one quote by John Lennon inspired my whole trip. “If a billion people were thinking about Peace, there would be Peace in our world.”

IMG_2493We scooted around the city some more. I enjoyed the cream colored buildings; they made nice contrast to the heavy industrial feel of the city. I know that industry is a hot topic there, but I wasn’t too fond of it. I get really freaked out when I think about the by products of industry and how the ground and rivers soak it up, and its impact lingers for decades.

Dave took me to Milwaukee Art Museum; really amazing building both inside and out.

We stopped for coffee at the independent spot in town, Alterras. I tipped the barista a post card and she came outside to find me. Rather shyly, she explained that she is working on a book of collective definitions for Love. Really cool! IMG_2492

I’ll leave her my definition when she leaves me hers….just kidding….maybe.

The rest of the night went rather fast. We cooked up some quesadillas, ate in a rush and headed over to the local Vespa shop. We hung out with the Reina family for awhile. They are from Sicily and signed my scooter in Italian. Wisconsin delightsChris decided to join us for a twilight ride to meet the family for custard. I’ve never seen a state have such gusto for custard. The line was out the door. Websites update flavors that each shop is serving, through the state of Wisconsin. You don’t get 10 choices of flavors. You get three. 2 standard, one daily special. I had a small cup of turtle-I don’t usually do dairy.

Crazy Chris and his P2We scooted back home to sit on the porch and talk for a couple of hours. Chris asked me a lot of questions. He’s a legend in his own right, having gone the distance. He said, “I don’t disagree with anything you’ve just said,” when I told him why I’m riding for Peace. Apparently, he came by to check me out and thought I was just a hippy and wound up approving, but more importantly, understanding the trip. He rode off to meet his ladyfriend and I crashed for 9 hours.

The next day was laid back around the house and Dave made the long anticipated stuffed peppers. We went to the Post Office so I could mail home a BUNCH of stuff. Bags are SO much lighter now, what a blessing!
It was a brief, but well done visit. Three hours after I left, Jen began contracting. I think she had a championship labor of 15 hours and then birthed Levi into the world- where the coolest big brother ever waiting to meet him on the other side!

Here’s the family photo, minus two cats.
Fam #3

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