After meeting friends for rugby brunch (a Six Nations tradition), and getting the shopping done, I managed to pull out the bike and get in a few hours of riding. Unlike last weekend when I just did a quick half-hour jaunt through the neighborhood, this trip was out of the area and through a bit of the Northern Virginia countryside I hadn't visited before.
Originally the plan was to head up Rt. 15 into Maryland. Just south of the little town of Lucketts, I got the itch to turn left. So... I did. Ended up traveling along a nice twisty road that ended up in the tiny community of Taylorstown. Taylorstown was first settled in 1734 and counts two of the oldest homes in Loudoun County amongst its dwellings. It’s just south of the Potomac River and was added to the National Registry of Historic Places in 1978.
After a quick picture opportunity, I traveled on, paralleling the Potomac until I popped out onto Rt. 15 just south of Point of Rocks bridge. Hooked a left, and was in Maryland as soon as I crossed the river. Back on my original idea of the trip, I was only on Rt. 15 before deciding to take another left, this time at the roundabout that led to Brunswick. Some miles and one construction detour later, I was heading towards the downtown area. I was getting cold at this point, so decided to stop at a local coffee shop to warm up.
Beans in the Belfry is housed in an old church, crammed full of overstuffed sofas and armchairs, charmingly shabby tables, and, of course, coffee. As a bonus on this Sunday afternoon, there was a group of local musicians playing a selection of bluegrass, folk, and some older classic mellow rock tunes. It was a nice way to warm up; a good cup of coffee, a good selection of music, and a delightful atmosphere to enjoy it all in.
I stayed for a few songs, finished my coffee, and decided to head on back. It was getting later in the afternoon, and chillier to boot. Thankfully I had the foresight to pack the heavier gloves and my warm fleece neck gaiter (or wrap or whatever it’s called). Took the direct route home and even with the heavy leathers I‘m glad I did. The temperature was definitely dropping.
But hey, it’s hard to complain when you get some hours on the bike in the middle of winter!