After a day of long miles we decided to do a short day that included spending some time in downtown Nashville. We took a relaxing morning by sleeping in and then eating at a French restaurant called Marche located just around the corner from their home. The food was delicious and the atmosphere very enjoyable. The entire neighborhood of East Nashville was quite to our liking due to modest sized homes that were each individual, good walk/bike infrastructure and a great offering of smaller, family owned shops, galleries and eateries.
After eating we stopped in at the local bike shop, Eastside Cycles, to look for a specific rear view mirror that fit my drop-style handlebars. I had discovered one that worked (Blackburn Road Mirror) around my bar end shifters while we were in Delaware and have been really pleased with it. Unfortunately, a few weeks ago, on a very windy day, I had propped the bike up only to have the wind knock it down and snap the mirror off. Not having a rear view mirror while touring makes you feel pretty exposed. Amazingly, they had the same mirror at Eastside Cycles! I say amazingly because most folks don’t need this type of mirror because they don’t use bar end shifters, making it an uncommon model for shops to stock.
Pleased with my find, we headed back to our guests home, said our goodbyes and headed for downtown.
There was no question as to whether or not we were in the right place when we got to the strip. It was around noon on a Friday and people were already partaking of the “Pedal Tavern” and frequenting the many restaurants, bars and an amazing candy shop where you can watch them make taffy. They also have a bike share program and there was live music EVERYWHERE!
We each ate some ice cream and wandered up and down the streets until we realized we were going to be late to our next host’s home if we didn’t get some miles covered.
There were plenty of bike paths, bike lanes and marked bike routes throughout downtown Nashville and even the roads with heavier traffic made for easy riding.
About two miles from our destination we gave our hosts a ring to let them know we were on our way. Bill hopped on his bike and rode down to meet us. It was nice to have some company to the top of the long, steep hill that leads to their home. When we arrived Sametta was making delicious, Mexican food and after much needed showers we relaxed with them over dinner while they entertained us with stories of their previous tours, races and local involvement with the bike club in their area, which (If I remember correctly) they started. (Yes, that was quite the run-on sentence) Later on we took a close look at their awesome bike garage/workshop and I drooled over a titanium Moots bike of Bill’s and a Velo Orange front rack and handlebar bag system that Bill had on his Surly LHT.
Ah, you just can’t have too many bicycles.