Do you ever remember a better weather weekend for the fourth of July? It was easy to imagine we were enjoying a San Franciscan or a Paris summer instead of our normal sultry southern humidity-fest. I hope you stayed outside and soaked up the cool weather as we dipped into the fifties for a couple of mornings.
I grabbed the opportunity to get in a few bike rides including two on the fourth and one on Sunday, giving me a chance to explore areas I hadn’t yet reached, including the Knoxville College campus and Ijams by bike for the first time. We may not have weather that nice again for the next two months.
Friday night was First Friday, but the life was sucked out of it due to the fourth celebrations on the World’s Fair Park. I rode through there mid-afternoon and the crowds were already large. I took out-of-town guests out to the First Friday openings and found myself repeatedly explaining what it is normally like. There were a few people about but, for example, when we reached the Emporium it was nearly empty. Still, we did find some very interesting art about at the Art Market, Gallery Nuance and the Emporium as well as a couple of other spots and I may have more on that another day.
After our barbecue lunch and various bike rides and First Friday, the star of the day was the fireworks display which we enjoyed from the roof of a parking garage. I suppose getting closer to the source might be exciting, but for us, a two minute walk to the view we get from the garage, along with the fact that we are back in our condo within a couple of minutes of the finish makes the view just fine for us. People were still wading through traffic an hour after the fireworks ended and it was nice to miss all of that.
Saturday morning continued the outdoor theme for us as Urban Son-in-law joined in the Barley’s Tour de Rocky Top which featured ride options of 31, 50, 62 and 100 miles. Since I huff and puff through eight mile rides at this point, I opted to take a few photographs. He did the 31 mile version, but there was no shortage of “century” riders.
Altogether there were hundreds of riders who could not have anticipated such magical weather when they signed up. It was timed to coincide with the Tour de France which started the same day and which is an annual viewing tradition in our family.
So, ours was a good urban fourth of July. I hope yours was good whether urban, suburban or otherwise. It felt like a great time to be alive in east Tennessee.