Jolly Good Lael

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She can stand upside down on her hands, ride all day and still have energy for a run, and speak some or all of a half-dozen languages.  She laughs more than anything else, and enjoys riding bikes as well as not riding bikes.  Resting, relaxing, and enjoying are the things she brings most to our bike tours, because she knows there is no prize at the end of the road.  Still, she will beat you up a climb and rip the descent– this is some of the reason she likes such big tires.  She is real good at slicing and dicing vegetables at camp, making me look like less of a hobo in a new place, and ensuring that my framebag is always topped with a bottle of local wine (sometimes to my surprise).  Lael is also the best at drinking water, and peeing on the roadside without shame.

We crossed the border into the Czech Republic yesterday from Germany, on a small wooden bridge over a stream connecting one dirt road to another.  This small act was exciting to both of us– to her it was thrilling.  We frequently cross borders, reach towns, crest hills, and descend hills, and with each accomplishment comes a similar enthusiasm.  Riding with Lael is exciting– in fact, it is thrilling.  Today is her birthday.  Say something nice in the comments below.

Last year Lael was in Corsica for her birthday while I was riding from Alaska to New Mexico.  We did the same thing on the blog to celebrate; everything that was written then is still true, and more.  Say something nice!

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Check out Lael’s Globe of Adventure for more words and images from our travels.

59 thoughts on “Jolly Good Lael

  1. Happy Birthday Lael 🙂
    You both a such an inspiration with your pics and words. I usually get blog updates at around 2am so by the time I get home from baking around 3am I sit down with my iPad and a hot drink and go on a virtual bike trip. Keep posting regular updates.

  2. hey lael,happy birthday! stay healthy, have no accidents, enjoy your day, the czech republic, and all the coming things. it was great to have met you! wish you all the best 🙂

  3. Did I ever tell you that on a hard ride with Joe I created “Lael Points” that would accrue every time I rode up something too steep or went through a bramble smiling (or at least without complaining) – shows in more ways than one how much I hope to learn from you, birthday girl! Champagne with birthday candles soon!

    • Thanks for bringing me to Mucha in Prague. I’ve never been so overwhelmed by an exhibit. What a birthday gift!

      I hope Munich was full of non-radler delicious beer. Thank you.

  4. I’ve wondered to myself more than once if Nicholas fully appreciates what he has in a woman as amazing as Lael? I’m pretty sure he does, and I hope that no matter how many miles (or kilometers) have rolled past he won’t take her for granted.

    (Antisthenes advice isn’t bad either . . . I received similar advice once upon a time and am forever grateful that I followed it.)


    • Hey Nate! The Czech Republic is full of kids and swimming holes. I think a tour on the big donkey and karate mummy would fit right in. Honestly, I’ve never seen so many little kids riding ss at superspeeds.

  5. She sounds like a keeper. How often do you meet such a lover of life? My husband is one and after we rode across the country, we married. Enjoy your day. And keep on keeping on!

  6. Happy Birthday Lael!

    The best day of the year is when One’s birthday comes around. I know yours will be special because of the company you keep, the adventures you seek, and the wine you will drink. What more could you ask for!

  7. We love you Lael! Have a wonderful birthday! What’s with the bloody duck tape on your finger? On second thought, don’t tell me! Love you lots! Mom

  8. Happy birthday La!

    “I said a boom chick-a-boom!”
    “Feeling goooood… Feeling oh so terribly good.”

    Spending time with Lael = ab workout from extreme, genuine long lasting laughter. I miss you La, and I hope I can join you someday along your exciting adventures.

    Love you!

  9. From One July born to another -Happy Birthday keep on being you own unique and wonderful self – that young man of yours is a lucky lad!

  10. As a friend of your mom’s I hope you and Nick don’t mind me reading your blogs. Lael you are an inspiration and a powerful motivators by your example of how to live and be. I hope to meet you when you visit AK next! Have a fabulous birthday and know that the worlds loves you! May the long time sun shine upon you and and all love surround you and guide your way on. Debbie

  11. Imagining you with sunshine above, dirt underfoot, trees’ hug, water from a town fountain, camp stove dinner and a bottle of wine. Hope your birthday was lovely, and all the others, too.

    ps. Further to Margaret’s post. When it’s an especially good time, we say we’re having a “Lael’s globe of adventure.”

  12. A wonderful omage to a wonderful lady! Best wishes Lael, from your New Mexico family! All the best to both of you as you begin to enjoy one of my favorite places in the world.

  13. My little daughter Caitlin has a new action girly role model ! She loves Barbies , Wendy houses , free running and has just got a new mountain bike! All the best and safe travels.

  14. Happy freakin’ birthday Lael!!! Nick, your so lucky, and this post is a wonderful way to celebrate such an inspiring gal! Mel and I miss you guys a ton!

    ride safe!

  15. Woop! Happy birthday Lael, sorry we have not yet met. Enjoying your adventures. Let me know if you guys will be in SW Germany in the next week, I will be in Karlsruhe until the 26th…


  16. Happy Birthday to Lael! Great handstand in the first pic, though I like many of your chosen shots for this post. Let the great travels together continue.

    • yo mary. Your tandem trip looks fast and fun. I’m glad you made it out west. I love it there. Nick and I rode the same bike path near Frisco last year- going uphill.

      Euro tandem trip soon?

  17. Happy Birthday Lael!!! Miss you so much!!! Give me a call when you are feeling up for a good chat 🙂
    Lots of love,

  18. Hope you had a great day! I had posted birthday wishes this morning but they did not seem to go thru, so again sending you blessings for health and happiness for many, many years! Многая літа!
    Since I aced the little language test you sent me, here is your turn at language mastery! Hope to see you soon in Ukraine!
    Love, Irene

    • I’ve been looking into language courses in Ukraine and Nick tells me I should just make friends with an old lady. Sounds like a keen plan. Maybe you can help me. A pocketable reference book would be great. See you soon!

  19. Happy Birthday. If you want to meet a local Frank’s dad’s cousin Joseph lives in Prague, loves cycling and would love to meet you guys. Let me know if you want to connect.

  20. I’m a day late and a dollar short BUT I feel that I NEED to express best wishes to Lael, and you.
    The both of you have inspired me with your respective blogs, travels, and general manner of doing things. My attitude and drive towards cycling has shifter, for the better, and I attribute that to you. So thank you.

    I hope your birthday was great Lael… Im sure it was.

    take care.

  21. Happy Birthday from an admirer and fellow crab. We are sometimes called moon children, because cancer…well. The nicest thing I can think to say, (and nice is not my normal metier) is to do what I know you will do and ignore all advice: marry not! Marry not and tie not the knot, for knots are made to bind and two such joyous children need no boundaries or rituals to show them the sky; the sky and the world are yours already and fly, my friends, fly! Again, Happy Birthday!


    • Happy Birthday, Lael! 🙂 We hope you had a wonderful day and wish you all the best for many happy, healthy years. Can’t wait to read about your adventures in Ukraine- it is a beautiful country!

      Love ❤ Maria, Andrew and Colin

  22. I learned that you have crossed a bridge and entered into my country. I am sorry we could not meet on your way from that bridge to Prague ( I actually live on that way – not in Prague ). I hope you enjoyed your birthday – I wish you happy journey – enjoy Prague and have a lot of fun.
    Frank Kurz ´s relative – Joseph

  23. I laugh–often out loud–every time your name pops into my head. Your energy is infectious, Lael!

    Happy belated Birthday!

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