I’ve been riding my bike a lot since I last blogged about it. I ride it almost every day, especially now that school is in session. It’s just how I get from here to there, and since I go here and there, I’m pretty much always on my bicycle. It has been so hot these last couple of months that biking has been a lot less pleasurable than usual. I’m still always happy once I’m on the bike, but if I’m being honest, I don’t always want to get on there.
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
Monday’s ride was a regular one, down the hill, a right, a left, a right, a left, a right again to the bike racks in front of University of Maryland Medical Center where I locked up before walking up to the shuttle stop to meet N., my most loyal shuttle buddy, for our ride into work. It was my first day back in the office and back in the classroom since my pops died, and I was a little nervous. It all felt rather mundane and normal, which was a huge relief, and seeing N.’s pinched-against-the-cold face under the hat she’s been wearing for basically her whole adult life put me at ease. Continue reading
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! Continue reading
After days and days of oppressive heat we had a cool one Wednesday, light humidity, and it was perfect for my bike commute to campus for a quick meeting. The ride to and from easily took three times as long as the meeting itself, which is a good ration of biking to working, if you as me. I took it easy, preparing for the taking it easy part of next week’s bike tour, and I did a great job pedaling slow, looking around, taking it all in. There’s this part of the Gwynns Falls Trail that goes through a tunnel and then up a decent, if short, incline. I’m terrible at this part of the trail. Continue reading
I spent most of last week riding my bicycle around–errands, work, getting miles in. I could tell I was riding a bit too much–I was starting to get kinda agitated and insomniacal, signs of overtraining, so I decided I’d pedal it back a bit, following my pops’ rule: whatever you do should make you want to get back on your bike again. And then it was Thursday, and I had a good ride out and back to work planned–the bonus of commuting by bike is that your long rides work themselves in without even trying. Continue reading
Last Wednesday’s ride was another longer one, up to campus for a mid-morning meeting, and then back to Patapsco Valley State Park, this time to find a trail inside the park, unlike Monday’s ride. A teensy bit of advanced planning can do wonders, but that’s not a lesson I seem able to learn. I also failed to learn the lesson that the GPS is not always right, so my ride out of campus led me, for a disturbingly long time, out on the shoulder of I195. It’s UMBC Boulevard for a hot minute, and then there’s allegedly a way to stay on that street and then take a ramp up to Selford. I’ve seen our cross country team coming back from this direction, so I’m sure that’s possible, but I couldn’t figure it out. Continue reading