Tuesday was busy–lots of emails in the morning, teaching in the morning and afternoon, and then meetings. It was good to see students again, but if I’m being real, I mostly wanted to be outside. It was sunny, 60 degrees, just perfect, and sitting inside at my computer felt like a waste of that perfect air. Fortunately, I had a dentist appointment in the afternoon and enough time to ride my bike there and back between tasks, so I got to hop on the Surly and head down the hill like the old days.
I haven’t bike commuted much since I stopped commuting and started working from home, but as soon as I’m rolling down Guilford, it’s like I never stopped. There they are, the cars parked in the bike lane, the drivers hoping to sneak in a quick left turn as I make my right of way through an intersection, the pedestrians staring at their phones and listening to their headphones so the bell isn’t enough. I do a lot of yelling when I’m on my bike, and I was quickly back in it. I think of it as announcing to the world that I’m here rightfully taking up space, so please don’t hit me with your cars.
What I wasn’t expecting, though, was to see so much traffic downtown on a Tuesday afternoon. I remember riding down and around the harbor a year ago, and it was like a ghost town. The pandemic is still here, but the traffic suggested to me that there’s more getting-back-to-normal than I know about from my cushy work-from-home/run-around-the-neighborhood position. This is of course anecdotal, and just because it seems busy to me on my bike doesn’t mean it’s actually busier, but maybe?
I got downtown, made my right onto the path around the harbor, rang my bell at the pedestrian crossings, and locked up to the rack by Federal Hill Park. (If you are looking for a dentist, this place is great, btw.) Quick cleaning and exam, a discussion with the dentist of our preferred biking and running conditions (she likes to run in the heat, I like to run on ice), and I was back on my bike to head home. I snapped this picture over the fence at the construction on Rash Field. It has been going on for awhile, but because I have mostly stayed in my neighborhood for the past year, I’ve missed it. I wonder how much new-ness I’ll see as I get back to riding all over the city.
And this is my reminder to myself to ride over to Lexington Market to see what’s going on there. I rode by that place almost daily for years, but haven’t been by in months. So much happens when we aren’t looking–and even if we are.
I rode around the harbor, got off and walked for a bit to make a phone call, and then I was pedaling up Fallsway to Guilford to home. It was a perfect day for a bike ride, and I cannot express how good it feels to be back on my bike. I’m writing this on a rainy Wednesday morning, thankful to the weather for enforcing just a little break for my body that I know it needs but I struggle to give it in the springtime. More rides later this week!