And then it was summertime, the rain stopped, and the sun came out. B. asked if I’d like to ride to work, all the way, and I was a little nervous, partly because we’d have to leave at 7:15am, but mostly because it’s kind of far, and there’s that uphill on Wilkens Avenue. I’ve made the ride a bunch of times, but what if it was too far this time? Like most things, it’s a mind game, so I made up my mind to go ahead and join him. He does it almost every day, so big deal, right? Continue reading
It has been a whole bunch of gray, rainy days lately–15 days in a row and counting, to be specific. I’m still riding my bike every day, but to be honest, I’m getting pretty tired of riding in the rain. Wednesday’s ride home was a total drag–I was tired, didn’t feel like climbing the hill on a good day, and there it was, more rain, getting my glasses wet, decreasing my braking power, and turning drivers into, well, drivers. I waited it out for 10 minutes or so, staring at the internet, wondering if it was possible to wait it all the way out, and deciding nope, no way out but through, get on the bike and get riding.
The sun finally came out out on Wednesday, and after a bunch of hours at home trying to catch up on email, I pulled myself out of bed–my office, when I’m lucky–and hopped on the bike to head down to War Memorial Plaza. I’d read on the internet that Nick Mosby was making an unexpected announcement at 1:00pm, and that would get me out of bed and on my bike, and then I’d be almost at that Chipotle and I still have that coupon they mailed everyone for a free burrito, so, given this tight calculus, I found myself waiting for Mosby to emerge and get all official in front of the cameras.
My dad was full of advice. If you knew him, you are smiling right now because you know how much advice he gave you. And sometimes it was really good advice, though I rarely admitted that, especially not in front of him. One of his best pieces of advice was to never start a bike ride in the rain. You’ll end plenty of them in it, he said, so why start out like that? I thought of that advice as I hopped on my bike on an early Thursday morning. It was raining, and there I was, starting a ride in the rain. If I could talk to him I’d suggest he amend that advice–never start a bike ride in the rain, unless following that advice would mean having to take the bus in Baltimore. Continue reading
Oh, thank goodness the deep freeze has lifted, at least for now. The past couple of weeks have seen lots of bicycling, mostly to and from work, but even a ride or two for no good reason on streets I don’t know like the back of my hand. Last week even featured a ride on streets that didn’t hold the snow amidst trees that did–and it was so beautiful. I remembered this ride I did with my dad years ago in his tiny town of McCall, Idaho. Continue reading
And suddenly it’s cold and rainy and I’m in my rain coat and cheapo rain pants, still riding my bike, because it’s still the best way to get around. If you don’t ride a bike, or you don’t ride a bike in this stuff, it can look crazy. A co worker asked when I got in today, You drove, right? I’m never going to drive, but when this rain turns to ice, I’ll take the bus. There’s always an option that isn’t a car, and on rainy days like this I’m glad for the options, but I’d still rather be on my bike. What a relief to not have to look for parking when I just want to duck in out of the rain for a minute and watch the rainy day go by over an afternoon coffee. Cheers.
The weather report promised a day of rain and wind and storms on Monday, much to my bike-loving chagrin. I spent the morning locked up at home, dealing with hundreds of emails that could no longer be ignored, and slowly but surely the sun came out. I decided to go with the skies instead of the weather report and head out on the bike to complete some errands like the daredevil I am. Continue reading
Spring has sprung, and onto Monday it found me taking the Surly down to the bike shoppe for a new front rack and kickstand to herald in what I hope to be my first season of bike camping. It took a good 45 minutes to install everything–those Surly racks are a bit of a breast, apparently–and then I was on my way down the hill, around, and back up the hill to meet up with A. and her sweet baby girl for a walk to the park to play on the swings. Continue reading
It has been a brutal February, not just cold, which I can deal with, but snowy and icy–pretty much my least favorite riding conditions. Riding on ice is the worst because eventually you have to stop or turn, and doing either of those things means risking a fall. I ride with such trepidation in those conditions, body all seized up, gripping everything too tightly to function, and it just isn’t fun to ride a bike that way. Spring can’t come soon enough, but it’s taking it’s own sweet time, and that’s the thing about weather–you just have to do what it’s going to do, and sometimes that means taking the bus. Continue reading
Wednesday’s ride was all about the weather, the first commute ride of the winter season. I realized as I rode down the hill to work, the freezing wind eating away at that bit of exposed neck, that this week’s rides were mostly going to be about weather. It’s like this at the turn of seasons–a flutter in my stomach that oh no, maybe I can’t keep riding my bike all the time in more extreme weather, followed by a few rides that remind me that yes, even though a bunch of my two-wheeled counterparts put their bikes in storage for very good reasons, I don’t have to do that. I can’t, really, because I don’t have a car. And as my friend A. wisely points out, it’s way colder to stand on the corner waiting for the bus than it is to take a ride. Continue reading