Portland Pride

My obsession (I have been officially labeled “obsessed”) with biking continues. I prefer to think of it as passionate. I’ve started bringing in toiletries and leaving them at work in preparation for beginning my bike commute. I’ve commandeered a locker in one of the bathrooms at work with showers (we have 3 locations that I know of with showers, although the nicest shower facilities are in a different building than the one I work in). The lockers are technically for day use only, but until someone screams I plan to keep my stuff there. Most of them never get used so I don’t think it will be an issue any time soon.

I still haven’t worked out where to drop the car for the day, but I haven’t given up. I’ll figure something out, although it may turn out to be a longer ride than I was hoping for. Initially I thought I’d only be biking about 10 miles each way, but now, after mapping out a possible alternate drop location and route it’s looking like it will be closer to just over 12 miles each way. Wow, just think of all the calories I’ll burn!  Not to mention the gas I’ll save.

One of my new favorite Web sites is Commute by Bike. It’s a gold-mine of information on commuting and riding in general. If you’re interested in starting to commute by bike, be sure to check out their Commuting 101 section. There are articles and discussions, even helpful videos. Today I ran across this bike-friendly cities on their site and was very proud to see Portland at the top of the list (as I suspected they would be) for North America. Ok, I don’t technically live in Portland, I’m in a suburb roughly sixteen miles west of it. There are of course nay-sayers here, people who feel the cyclists have “ruined” the city (as one commenter said on another web site) but for the most part I think Portlanders accept the bikes. I’ve only been honked at twice, flipped off once by people I can only describe as the Clampetts, although I’m sure some of the cars that have passed me would have liked to say or do something. Of course, these incidents were while I was out on recreational/training rides, not during rush hour in town. We’ll see how that goes. Every single day I see more and more bicyclists, and as I sit in my car, stalled in traffic, getting passed by someone on a bike my resolve to bike commute grows. I need more clothes to ride in, and decide how I want to carry my office clothes, and other things I’ll need (lunch, etc.). Panniers, or back pack? I may try the backpack for now, still need to get a rack for the car to carry the bike to the drop point. I plan to get the car rack this weekend, so that’ll be one thing down.


About D. D. Syrdal

Writer of vampire stories and science fiction. First novel, "Revenants Abroad", available now at Amazon, BarnesandNoble.com, Kobo.com, Smashwords. If you like a vampire you can go out drinking with and still respect yourself in the morning, I think you'd like Andrej.
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