I spent the day working from home on the endless revisions of this endless article, and after a lovely chat with the lovely R. who stopped by to recount yesterday’s victorious master’s thesis defense–yay!–it was time to take the bike out. I headed toward the lake ISO pelicans on this perfectly sunny spring day. I needlessly worry sometimes that that 20 mile loop will ever get old, so today I took a left after I rolled off the Jeff Davis overpass and rode around Mid-City for a bit, figuring I’d end up at the lake at some point. And thankfully, like usual, I was not in a rush. I ended up dead-ending at the Pontchartrain Expressway, and I’ve got to say, watching those cars pile up reminds me why I want to stay on my bike, and why I want to live close enough to my workplace so I can do that, no matter where I end up. I snapped this picture of a dilapidated building at the dead end. I couldn’t tell what caused this particular dilapidation, but the place is a mess. The shed on the outside is torn away from the facade and peeking in the doors, I could see moldy walls and piles of furniture and appliances. There’s still furniture on the balcony on the second floor, but I’m pretty sure nobody’s been sitting up there, watching the cars go by, for quite some time. There are so, so many properties like this all over this city. And then there’s the lake, quiet today, ringed with people fishing and walking dogs and jogging, and those cyclists from Tucson who chatted with me about what a perfect day it was today and how deeply, deeply pleasurable it is to ride bicycles in New Orleans. One of them shouted at me, “nice bike,” just like I do whenever I see somebody riding a Surly Long Haul Trucker. Yep, she’s got one too, and it’s her favorite thing in the world, too. New Orleans is a complicated place, but bike love is pretty simple.
you are a pleasure.
I think it would be easy to have a love/hate relationship with NOLA. Love the people and the weather, hate the decay and slow restoration progress.
Hi there! I am about to move to NOLA in a few weeks for a job and I would love to chat about the city, where to ride, where to live, etc. Couldn’t find an email, so if you would be willing, shoot me an email at: email@example.com. Hope to meet you in person some day, as I ride around seeing the city on my bike!
I thought that was a particularly familiar-looking blighted property. It’s around the corner from my apartment, and I’ve often wondered who it belongs to and when someone is going to fix up that little piece of land (and all the others like it in my beautiful corner of Mid-City). Maybe me, someday. A lady can dream.