11.01.2011

Halloween Hangover... and a morning ride

morning came as no surprise
I knew when I went to bed last night that the morning would arrive the next day
only... it seemed to come on a little faster than I expected
I woke up with a Halloween Hangover

too much red wine
too much Halloween candy

once the kids were dropped off at school I had a few minutes to get on the bike before heading into work
yesterday I rode north through Rock Creek Park then onto the Capital Crescent Trail which looped me back towards downtown
my legs were dead and my energy was flat
I was not trying to go fast I was just fighting going slow

so when considering this morning's ride I figured that I should just accept my energy level and go for a mellow ride
instead of heading north I allowed my ride to take me closer to my office downtown

on the bike and out the alley
I meandered through Mount Pleasant where I was able to see the decorated houses in the light of day
candy wrappers decorated the street and the sidewalk
some wrappers empty and others still containing sugary treats

on the street I worked a mellow weave
trying to maintain momentum
always working to put myself where I am most safe
always anticipating the move of the cars around me
knowing that if I were to follow the instructions of what would be the law as to where the bicycle should be... I would be dead

rather than riding to the right of cars down Mount Pleasant's main street I bisect the road in a the unmarked no man's land where trolley tracks are now buried by asphalt
dipping to the right side to avoid left turning traffic only to return to the center space between the line of traffic

on into Adams Morgan I run a similar trajectory
even where there is a Bike Lane I am forced to select an alternate options
right turning cars exiting the main road
right turning cars entering the main road
cars exiting parking spaces and cars entering parking spaces
throw in a few double parked vehicles and well
the Bike Lane is no place for a bike

as I pedal my way through the city I move at a rate no so intense as to cause me to sweat
even though I am dressed head to town in modern fabrics that would wick the sweat away if I were to sweat
down Connecticut Avenue then a right onto what may be Florida
at Q Street I resist the pull of the majestic buffalo statues and take P Street with its slightly more subtle grade

through the streets of Georgetown I take in the Halloween displays on the doorways of these historic buildings
once on M Street I see all sorts of police and caution tape
markers of some things that are wrong in the city today

traffic is light and the lights themselves are in my favor
without incident I am crossing Key Bridge on the sidewalk and then onto the Mount Vernon Trail
I pass Roosevelt Island that is ablaze in autumn splendor
it is a little past rush hour so the trail has few runners and bikers

the monuments across the river are a wonderful site
planes fly overhead on their way to an airport that I still call Washington National
across the river in front of the Washington Monument a helicopter that appears to be Marine One arcs a turn
in between the sound of copter blades, jet engines, and speeding cars I can still hear an assortment of birds
lots of bird activity

migratory birds and local birds enjoying the day

with my "in time" approaching fast I pedal on to the parking lot past the park before the airport and turn around
I ride the trail and turn up towards the 14th Street Bridge
across the bridge and then down past the Jefferson Memorial

as I pass the Washington Monument I think of my commute and other people's commutes around the world
what other people see versus what I see
my backdrop is pretty special

I have my camera in my bag but there is no time to take pictures

more government buildings
some more significant than others

past Department of Commerce and the the US Treasury Building
I cut through Lafayette Park with The White House within view
it is not in my routine to do such... but on this day I exchange a hearty hello with Elijah the Nature Boy
the morning is brisk... but not so cold that this man needs anything more than his cut off jean shorts and his wooden walking stick

out the park and onto the streets
I roll pass a line of food trucks at Farragut Park
the last few blocks of my ride and I am in my office
bike in the closet I change from my cycling gear straight into my business casual

no need for a shower
well... maybe I could use a shower... some deodorant would be nice
but I did not ride so hard to really sweat
and it is time for me to start my day

into my office I turn on my computer and start my day
after a few of my morning tasks are completed I find myself taking a lunch break typing this note



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