This morning was a rude re-introduction to biking to work in DC. It was incredibly muggy. I was sweating before I pedaled once. Ick.
I rode Big Nellie to ease my way back into reality. It was a smooth fast ride to work. A fellow bike commuter passed me without warning with inches to spare near Porto Vecchio just south of Old Town. I yelled at him to give a warning. He passed a man walking a dog again without warning. I rang my bell and passed the man who proceeded to yell at me for not giving a warning. I said I gave a warning and rang my bell again. “You have to do it louder!”
I can’t win.
I miss the peaceful riding with logging trucks going past at 60 miles per hour.
At the north end of Old Town, a resident had parked his car completely obstructing the sidewalk. Did you know that Alexandria’s city motto is “Where pedestrians come last.”?
I managed to avoid any more unpleasantness until the evening commute.
My co-workers started warning me about a very nasty storm approaching from the west at about 3:30. (I had the radar on my screen already.) I timed it too tightly and managed to find myself a mile from work or shelter in a downpour. The tailwind was nice but the visibility was almost nonexistent so I pulled over beneath the 14th Street bridge to wait it out.
After 15 minutes the rain abated and I headed out. Within a mile the rain began anew so I pulled over under the National Airport access bridge near Crystal City. I had some company including a dad and his toddler son in a Bakfiets. The boy was upset, not because of the rain but because he had lost his bottle.
The rains abated again, this time for good so I headed home. Of course, old difficulties came in Old Town. Three cars pulled u-turns in front of me (two were in intersections) without signaling. A car was parked across the bike lane on North Union Street. Rather than take a picture and report it, I gave the house the finger as I rolled by. Going in the opposite direction was an Alexandria police cruiser. They didn’t bother to stop and ticket the car. They never do. It is days like today that I really believe that the League of American Bicyclists should rescind Alexandria’s bicycle friendly city status.
South of the Beltway the Mount Vernon Trail was strewn with branches and other tree debris. I managed to get through without a problem.
Tomorrow I get to do this again. The day after I may have my head examined.