It was a hot & sunny day in early September as we cruised around north Philly in search of our baby bike.  We turned up 2nd Street and the road ended at a small, abandoned-looking warehouse. On the brink of berating Siri, I spotted a green bike route sign that indicated we found the bike shop.

While the team prepared our girl for life on the road, we traveled to the Atlantic coast. We spent Labor Day weekend in Ocean City, New Jersey and then arrived in Avalon on the 9th.

Karl, Andi, Ninja, Oli & Christian were all there, slowly becoming accustomed to the IPA beer at Cape May Brewing Co. and the plethora of options at the Wawa sandwich ordering station.

We had happy hour on the beach.

We snuggled in bed.

On my parents' 39th anniversary, we exchanged 'wows' and celebrated afterwards at the Avalon Yacht Club with garlands galore.

Our bike was at the party. It was great to show her off and excitedly tell our family and friends about our Freedom Tour: a travel via tandem & train around the USA supporting American & local products.

First stop, naturally, is NYC. NYC is a great cycling city. The amount of bike lanes during the Bloomberg administration burgeoned, making it safer and easier for cyclists. It is so much fun and super convenient, which probably makes taxi passengers pretty jealous as they sit in traffic and watch the bikes whiz by and the meter tick higher and higher...

We didn't take our fancy new ride out for a spin during this brief visit to NYC because I was too lazy to coordinate bike rentals for the entire German tour group I was leading and our cute, little apartment rental didn't have sufficient assembly space for Christian.  

Our preferred mode of transportation this time around was boat and we circumnavigated Mannahata like the Lenape.

We continued with the boat ballyhoo with a stop at Frying Pan.  Though this place has become totally mainstream and super crowded after work, we went on Tuesday afternoon and commanded the ship.  It boasts a great variety of local brews from ABC Beer Co., Blue Point, Chelsea Brewery, & others on their rotating draft menu. The classic fave brew when we're in town is Brooklyn Brewery's Lager and the brewery's tasting room is a great place to visit - now open all weekend long!  Be sure to also try Sixpoint, Kelso, and Bronx Brewery's offerings.

Drunch is one of the things I love best about New York.  In Bavaria, it's called Frühschoppen.  Both are great brunch parties, though the latter is more about beer & brats than Bloody Marys and mimosas.  To give the boys a feel for NYC-style Frühschoppen, we went to Joseph Leonard.  Although JL saves the epic Bloodies with oysters & fried brussel sprouts for the weekend crowd, we still enjoyed the classic with a beer chaser.  All I needed was a croque-monsieur to be in prime drunch mode...

The Bloodies were a good primer for punch bowls at Cienfuegos.  Happy hour means half priced punch bowls which means reasonable/normal NYC prices.  Cienfuegos is in the East Village, which was our home base for the couple days we were in town.  Great 'hood with plenty of eating & drinking options with an edgy boho vibe.