Sunday, May 30, 2010

2nd cupcake ride report

all photos courtesy of malena andrade of of course i forget my camera on this special day

yesterday was my 2nd cupcake ride!

i pushed back the initial date by a week due to rain and it's a good thing i did! because we sandwiched the cupcake around bells on a bloor a massive ride-parade that is held annually to try to get the city to build bike lanes on bloor st.

we started at hot oven bakery where we all gulped down some scrumptious cupcakes and chatted with toronto star reporter chantal.

sadly we missed the star photographer by just a few minutes and our photo op with the hot oven bakery cupcakes, so the bakery gave us a pack of 4 complimentary cupcakes to take with us to high park (the meeting spot for 'bells on bloor').

at high park we got some flags for the ride/parade and then the group of maybe 1000 cyclists hit bloor street and we rode slowly eastbound to queens park (ontario's legislative assembly).

the 'bells on bloor' part of the ride took probably around 1 hour - 1.5 hours. there were so many people out: hardcore race cyclists in their spandex; lots of mountain bikes; families in crazy tandem bikes (one was a 6 seater bike with a chariot trailer and a child's seat so the whole family of 8 could bike together!!); lots of cyclists that played instruments while riding!

after the rally at queen's park, the cupcake girls left 'bells on bloor' and headed up to dessertlady to finish off our ride, where we indulged in a red velvet cupcake with creamcheese icing, but also some super yummy sorbets and ice creams. mmmm, earl grey chocolate ice cream with pear sorbet .... mmmmmmm

Sunday, May 23, 2010

spring time in vancouver

cotton candy streets

my mom's wisteria

my mom's wisteria

as we are definitely enjoying summer in toronto, i was thinking back to how i really got to enjoy springtime in vancouver this past april/may.

when i arrived, the cherry blossoms were in full bloom (満開 = mankai) and i finally got to see my beloved tree-lined streets all pink and happy for the first time since i left vancouver. what an absolute treat.

then as the cherry blossom finished my mom's wisteria started to bloom and i was lucky enough to enjoy these beautiful flowers during my stay as well.

i was definitely in flower bliss.

beatles mural

other vancouver highlights:
  • hanging out with b and the extra week we were able to have in vancouver, thanks to the icelandic volcano (which allowed andre, b and dom to hang out!! such a treat)

  • i ran the vancouver sun run and beat my goal by 8 minutes (i finished the 10km in 1 hour and 7 min)

  • spending time with my grandma

  • living with hannah and chris a week before their wedding

  • myae and i reading our teenage diaries together and realizing just how boy crazy we were ...

  • seeing lots and lots of friends and wanting to become a hermit after

  • beatles rock band with my fellow high-school era beatlemaniacs

  • unearthing the beatles mural lori and i painted 14 years ago

  • stuffing my face with awesome asian food

  • as mentioned earlier, biking in vancouver with my honey

  • but most of all, family

Monday, May 17, 2010

bike lanes are growing all over the city

bike friendly traffic button

.... my bike specializes in the nitty-gritty
new york city never had an equality, it's reality
economic duality
sci-fi wasabi - cibo matto

i'm so jealous of bike riders in vancouver. the city is literally glowing with bike lanes and bicycle awareness. if a street isn't a designated bike lane, more often than not there are bike icons with chevrons painted on the street to remind drivers to 'share the road'.

when i was just planning my trip to vancouver, i asked one of my bicycle road race friends if he'd be up to do critical mass with me. his response was that vancouver doesn't really need critical mass to create awareness because people actually took the long route and went through city hall to create all the bike lanes that exist in the city. that being said, he was still up for 'the mass' because a lot of cute girls seem to always show up.

anyway, we didn't end up doing critical mass due to rain, but i now know what it feels like to cycle in a truly bike friendly city.

so now, how can we get this kind of bicycle infrastructure in toronto?

Friday, May 14, 2010

hannah and chris' wedding



it was a fun celebration and a yummy luncheon. most importantly the bride and groom were happy with how the event unfolded and seemed to really enjoy themselves.

my amazing mother sewed the bridesmaid dresses and with the help of my aunt (who is a flower arrangement teacher in japan) arranged all the flowers, bouquets and boutonnieres.

and myae did the makeup!


she had maybe 3 hours of sleep at this point - but looks pretty nonetheless!


he is almost always this happy - seriously!


me and oba-chan (granny).


the talented make-up artist and her father.





i took a whopping 500+ photos - of which 50% aren't very good, but after uploading them all i can't be bothered to change the privacy levels. so if you'd like to view the photos email me and i'll add you as family on flickr!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

2nd toronto girls' cupcake ride and other bike news

our westcoast bikes

my nishiki



the miyata cranks

i've just sent out an invite to the 2nd toronto girls' cupcake ride. ... i hope more girls come out this time!

my other bike news is that while in vancouver, andre and i both scored awesome 80's roadbikes. for me this is especially exciting because it's a boy's bike with a straight top tube that i can straddle ... and it's super light. i love it! also, andre's bike is triple butted (meaning the frame is skinnier in parts to make it even lighter).

although, i was super sad to have andre take my new bike back to toronto (i wanted to explore more of vancouver on this bike), i am really excited to see how the fixie conversion and transformation will turn out. did i already mention that this bike is the lightest bike i've ever ridden!

next up, a bike report about biking in vancouver. *sigh* bike lane network in vancouver, how i absolutely ADORE you. why does the bike lane network in toronto suck so much?