I’ve been off the bike and in the car for the past few days, on a little research foray in Virginia, E. in tow. It was all fun and games and history–Mt. Vernon, Jamestown, Colonial Williamsburg, the Museum of the Confederacy, the White House of the Confederacy, Tredeger Iron Works, and the American Civil War Center (phew!)–until yesterday, when the car wouldn’t start. Ugh. Long story short, I ended up having to leave the thing at the mechanic’s in Mechanicsville, VA and rent a car to drive us home. Next weekend, I will hopefully get to go back there and pick up the car and bring it back here, leaving a good chunk of my wallet there. Ugh. All of this meant that today I got to toss Brompty in the trunk, return the rental to the airport, and then ride to the the light rail to take us back downtown for a ride back up the hill to home. As soon as the rental car was out of my hands I felt better. When something goes wrong with a car I have no control whatsoever. I have no idea how a car works; I just know it’s going to cost me a whole lot of money to make it go again. A bike is a totally different story. I can fix a flat, and in several years of almost-daily riding, that’s the worst thing that’s happened to me. And with a bike, I’m never going to be so far from home that I can’t just ring S. for a ride home or to the nearest bike shop. Ok, so I can’t ride my bike to the Stonewall Jackson National Shrine in a couple of hours. I’ll get the car fixed, but oh, it felt good to just be back on my bike this afternoon without having to lug any giant, expensive purses around. The ride, however, was not my favorite. It was cold and windy, that windy that makes your eyes sting and run until you can’t really see, that pushes you around and makes downhills feel like flats. I slowly pushed myself up the hill, stopping to take this picture of a sign blown over on the bridge at Guilford & Mt. Royal, the third-to-last of the slight inclines remaining at this point in the ride home. Yep, it was a windy one, and I’m not going to lie–I was pretty pumped to be back home, but oh, I’d rather push up that hill on a bike than drive easy in a car any day. And with the car out of commission, I’m guaranteed to get even more time on the bike than usual. Always a silver lining!