Wednesday’s ride was back to the ol’ commute, down the hill early, lock up at the racks by the med center, shuttle to campus, a full day of teaching, meetings, and writing and emailing and emailing and omigod so much emailing, and then back on the shuttle, pick up the bike, and ride up the hill to home. It was a long day and my legs felt heavy, so I found myself very much wishing it could be up the hill to work and downhill on the way home. I took the lane, grumped at fellow cyclists who didn’t ding a bell or say “on your left” as they passed or even return my how you doin’ (why are so many cyclists so unfriendly? isn’t part of the point of being on a bike is you aren’t trapped in a metal box and so can say hi to everybody?), and eventually got to that place where I’m glad I’m riding my bike because look at me, looking at all the things! I waited at the light on North, crossed, rode through the school administration building’s parking lot (weirdest part of this bike path, and one that always feels a little wrong and dangerous) and stopped at the next corner to take this picture of the empty lot where they’re building some townhomes. The sign reads LIVE HERE REDUCE YOUR COMMUTE. I’ve passed this corner countless times, watched it go from vacant to rubble to empty lot, and now I guess they’re putting up a new place that would, yes, reduce my bike commute by a mile or two, but that I’m quite sure even I couldn’t afford on my solidly middle class salary. I wonder how it will fit in with buildings around it–the schools, parole and probation offices, row homes new and old. And I wonder how long it will take to be built and which bike commuter will move in. I hope they’re friendly. Riding the same route day after day lets you see that thing they call gentrification (they’re summoning a certain kind of bike commuter here, not just someone who rides a bike to get around), but that I’d rather call urban change (the other’s so overdetermined we can’t even see specificity anymore, I worry), right up close, in person, as it happens. And then I continued my ride through the many neighborhoods between this spot and home, a mile or two through so many different worlds.