After a many-hour morning at the coffee shoppe grading papers it was time to get back on the bike and spin along on this beautiful sunny fall day. I headed down the hill, around the harbor, and up through Federal Hill toward my favorite pedestrian mini mall called McHenry Row. The place has everything I need: a Hair Cuttery (that’s what the chain’s actually called, and they’ll shape me up for $15), a massage place, sandwiches, a bar with half price apps, a donut shop, frozen yogurt that comes out of the wall, and even a grocery store that gives you free cookies and has wifi and TVs–it’s where I watched the Olympics before getting my very own home antenna. I could totally live in that suburb-in-the-city. I got my sandwich before getting an unbelievably relaxing massage (I had to apologize for snoring) followed by too much frozen yogurt. Oh, vacation, thank you for being here. I took the long way home, hoping to get west enough to avoid downtown on my way north. That is a very hard thing to do with the JFX running through the city, my friends. I zigged and zagged around the stadiums, stopping to take a picture of this empty lot with the the waste treatment plant in the far distance, a discount store, a burned-out warehouse, and in the near, behind me a self-storage place. This is the future home of the Harrah’s Casino. It will be all lit up and shiny, unlike the empty weed-and-garbage strewn lot that’s currently here, and it will make money for some people, but likely not many, unless the jobs are surprisingly well-paid. It will look like there’s cash here, though, and the people will make money will probably imagine that it’s trickling down rather than imposing yet another poor tax because it’ll look shinier than it does now. I’ll probably go there all the time. I followed the bike lane on Bayard, pedaled around Pigtown, Hollins Market, and Poppleton for awhile, and then took a right on Mulberry, left on MLK, taking the sidewalk in the rush hour traffic before walking through that maze of one-ways over by the hospital. Wow, it’s a trip to try to travel north on the west side at 5pm. I hit Chase and traveled over to the Fallsway to get out of traffic, and what did I find? They’re paving the Fallsway cycletrack! How very exciting! Oh, Fallsway cycletrack, this holiday I give thanks for you. Thank you for this most lovely Wednesday, Baltimore.