Sunday, March 30, 2008

March 2008 Totals

Miles This Month: 77.2
This Month Last Year: 68.8

Miles This Year (so far): 124.6

I get a little farther every year! The weather is getting noticeably better, so I have big expectations for April.

Leaning against the car
This shot breaks all the rules (except maybe #9)

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Supper Time

Supper from Wally WorldQuick trip to Wal-Mart to return some shoes and get supplies for dinner. I was able to get dinner for five and snacks for an overnight all in the panniers, including spaghetti, sauce, ground beef, garlic bread, chips, cheesy poofs, a gallon of milk, and a 2 liter of Dew. Packed along with the usual junk I carry around, I still would have had room for the roast beef I decided against.

Miles Ridden: 10.8 - My first utility ride of the year!

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

...and my socks don't match

Another great day for a commute. Leaving about 10 minutes later than my last commute two weeks ago, I was met by a nice sunrise, which made the headlight unnecessary. Plus I was pushed into campus by a nice west tailwind.

However, when I was getting dressed in my office, I noticed that the socks I had selected in my dimly lit bedroom were not the same color. Hopefully, my co-workers didn't notice.

For lunch, I joined some co-workers on the trolley to head to Yats, the new cajun/creole place on the Landing. The food there is great, and I throughly enjoyed my Curried Mushroom Etouffee. I think I should have stopped after eating half the plate like I usually do, 'cause I'm still feeling totally stuffed seven hours later. Still, it was delicious.

I ran up to the Walgreens after work to pick up a fresh battery for my dead cyclo-puter, realizing that it has been a while since I've ridden in traffic. I need to get back to my relaxed attitude when the cars are flying around me.

Cattail Trail
Runners on the Cattail Trail

I shot west on Cumberland to join the Cattail Trail. Then, west on Lindberg, south on 400W, and east on Division to home.

What a great ride! I can't wait for the next one, which based on the weather report, could be next Monday.

Miles Ridden: 13.8

Oh, I forgot to mention that when I arrived home, I found a fire truck parked in front of my house. Can't be good, right? It turns out that they were performing new driver training by having the new guy back the truck down the curvy hill, and they were waiting on me to pass.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Fun with the Mobile Camera

I was trapped in the truck today, but it turned out to be a good day for a ride. These guys were out on campus, and they looked interesting to me. (Click the photos for slightly larger versions)

Tall Bike
Tall Bike

Bike on Bike Action
Bike on Bike Action

This guy had a bicycle lashed to a backpack, and he was moving (down the sidewalk) at a good clip.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

The First 100 Miles

Since FDR (at least), politicians have been judged on their progress during their first 100 days. At the end of my ride today, my total for the year reached exactly 100 miles. Sure, it's not as much as I expected to have, but this late winter / early spring has been colder and wetter than usual. Here's to better weather soon!

The ride today started a little cold, but my clothing choices served me well once again. The cold chill the neighbor and I felt was soon replaced by a warm core temp, and my gloves and headband kept the extremities cozy. The fleece pants worked OK for most of the ride, but my knees were a little chilled towards the end.

The plan was to meet a friend of the neighbors at his place, and then have the three of us ride around a little, but he wasn't available at the last minute. However, that didn't stop us, as we took the Montmorenci Route. Traffic was light, while we saw many other cyclists on the ride. Even though we weren't on the Llama Route, we found a couple ready for a photo.

Not Camera Shy
Curious Llamas

Much like last weekend, the cranes were circling around the countryside as we rode.

Miles Ridden: 17.5

Friday, March 14, 2008

Friday After Work

An early departure from work, warm and sunny weather, and an accommodating schedule with the kids all came together to offer me a ride today, and I took it.

Just a quick ride to the bridge and on south to the top of the ridge before turning around. For a Friday, there wasn't much traffic.

Miles Ridden: 11.5

I need to ride some different routes so that I can get more interesting posts!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Like a Little Child

Just like a kid on Christmas eve, I was pretty excited about taking my first commute ride of the year today. I took a set of clothes in to work to hang on the clothes rod I installed back in November. After I got home, I fixed the flat tire from my last commute in November. I also checked the lights, chain, and front tire, and gave the rig a quick ride around the cul-de-sac. Everything was ready to go!

I had no problem packing up my stuff and getting out the door this morning, and the ride in was great. As I came down the first hill, I noticed that the cyclo-puter was not working. (Guess I didn't check everything)

At 28 degrees with no wind, I was dressed perfectly in my gloves, wool socks, and fleece headband which kept the extremities warm. When I arrived, I was neither hot or cold.

The bike rack was blocked by snow pushed there by the plows, much like last year at this time.

Snowed In
Snow Covered - Again

I had time to change into work clothes before 8:00 (although people were gathering outside my door for a birthday cake while I was changing - a little uncomfortable for me knowing they were out there).

After work, I took a quick trip down to the transportation office to sign out a car for a business trip tomorrow, and they gave me a Prius. It will be fun to see how the hybrid works out. Then, I came home on the South Work Route without difficulties.

I can't wait for the next ride!

Miles Ridden: 9.2

Monday, March 03, 2008

Fun with Email

Readers in the IT or business fields may get a kick out of this email I received at work the other day. This excerpt comes from a discussion about why legal counsel has been involved in vendor negotiation before the project has been defined:
I don't see "gather functional requirements info". What I would be looking for at the next meeting is a one-pager of pros and cons regarding this question. While "saves $xxx" and "costs $yyy" are certainly on there, I think there is more to this question. Selling my car and riding a bike to work has lots of cost saving, likely a good purchase agreement could be reached with the help of my lawyer, and a new bike probably doesn't cost very much. Seems like there would be other factors in my decision to proceed, however. :-)

I'll have to have a talk with this guy about commuting by bicycle. He's over analyzing it a little! :-)

Sunday, March 02, 2008

Bird Watching

We finally had a break in the weather! With temps in the high 50s to low 60s, and winds from the South, the neighbor and I got out for a ride.

And we weren't the only ones that were out on the road. We passed or were passed by well over a dozen other riders, from pre-teen girls to kitted-out roadies, all enjoying the warm, sunny day. Our route took us west up the hill at Indian Creek, around and down by Martell Forest, over and back on the Granville Bridge, and by the Gourd House before returning home.

Down the hill near the forest, we talked to a guy in a van that was turning around to show his kids the rafter of turkeys grazing in a partially flooded field. Next, we saw a murder of crows roosting near the river that were startled away as we approached. Finally, we heard the cooing of sandhill cranes flying overhead. There were many sieges circling, presumably looking for a place to stop for the night.

Sandhill Cranes
Sandhill Cranes

After a cold, wet, depressing February, it was great to get out today.

Miles Ridden: 14.4


We have a red tailed hawk nesting in a tree behind the house. This has kept the number of smaller birds down, and our little dog is nervous.

Last week, my wife and I saw a bald eagle swooping in front of the van as we crossed the river. Their population here has been increasing in the area, after being gone for many years.