Monday, September 10, 2007
My new new commute
I found out last week that my commute was about to change. Since July, I've been riding my bike to work about 3.8 miles, mostly on a paved trail in the woods. It has been great. I spend the morning spinning on the trail at a steady pace, finding myself not having to think or be aware very much. That allows me to clear my head and not have any distraction.
I am now working at a client site on the other side of town. I rode in today 6 miles on Lake Otis Parkway. Lake Otis is one of the busiest streets in Anchorage. Yes, unfortunately since half of the population of the State of Alaska lives in this town, we do have traffic. It was raining lightly, and the traffic was heavy. The client's office is on the worst intersection in town. I despise it. There is a big mall with a Best Buy on one corner. A Burger King next to it. A Starbucks catty corner from that, and a New Jersey type strip mall on the other.
About two blocks from the office it started pouring and the rain started heavily building up on the side of the road. I don't mind riding in the rain at all. Even when it means showing up at work soaked. But, when I got to Dimond Ave I got splashed by a huge wave that got kicked up by a car speeding by. One of those bad movie type waves, where cheesy music is playing, as the scenes of my bad day start to unfold. Then there was another wave, and another. I finally got to the final intersection and made eye contact with a car turning right, started to cross the street and realized there were two turning lanes and almost got hit by a school bus. Cheesy music continues.
I got to the office to the surprise of my new coworkers and one of them said, "Woah, that was you riding on Lake Otis. You're nuts." I brought my bike into the office because that's what I do at PangoMedia, where half of the staff commutes by bike, and 10 minutes later the owner comes in and comments about the fact that there is a bike in the office, and that I might soil his new carpet. Ugh. So that was my day.
I have recently been talking to Brian about what the commute this winter will be like. Now that I know be going to South Anchorage every day until the end of February he thinks it will be difficult for me to do in the snow. I know it will, but I still want to try. I definitely need to revise my route, and maybe I will just have to chalk up my commute as training for the Little SU 50K in February. Despite the bitterness, I'm going to try and make the best of it. And too all of you who live in Anchorage and drive a big truck without ever putting anything in the back of it and who don't slow down for big puddles on the side of the road...boooooo.