Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Stranger Danger! And Mario Kart

As I biked home yesterday in fall weather at its best, minding my own business (i.e. trying not to die) I get to Sammamish High School.

This particular section of my commute is never fun, but makes me feel alive. In the mornings, the cars are backed up along 140th Ave to drop off kids at school and in the evenings it's packed with commuters on four wheels.

As I'm biking along 140th Ave I hear someone talking to my left. I figure it's one of the cars next to me so I don't really listen all though I think I hear the word Cannondale. Then it strikes me that there was a question involving my bike. Funny how one can have delayed hearing sometimes - so I realize that the question was if I'm riding a Trek or a Cannondale.

I sense a shadow to my left so I turn and there's another bicyclist. "Cannondale", I respond to the guy who is now biking to my left in a not-very-wide bike lane. He continues the conversation, saying that he's asking because he is contemplating getting a new bike but hasn't decided if he should go with steel or carbon.

My mother brought me up better than to ignore polite conversation, so I politely converse - even though I'm starting to feel a little freaked out. Not because a strange man is talking to me, but because I'm somewhat squeezed between him and the sidewalk. He is more or less cycling in the car lane. I'm worrying about pissed off drivers.

He tells me he commutes from Redmond to Seattle daily - which is quite impressive. Finally, after this strange bit of bike ride, he takes a right and I turn left. I never got his name, but I'm sure we'll meet again.

Mario Kart

Same stretch this morning (140th Ave), I'm almost hit twice by turning cars. One idiot even parked in the bike lane so he could let out one of the snot monsters... sorry, I mean future president. As I get out into the car lane to pass him, he turns out as well almost side swiping me. Had it not been for my cat like reflexes, I'd be a pancake now.

As I'm biking along, dodging cars and pedestrians to my left and right, I feel as if I'm playing real life Mario Kart. Fun in theory, not fun in real life.

I'm biking to the end of the Centennial trail this weekend. It ought to be about 120 miles. Hopefully it won't rain, but if it does I get to test my gaiters. That's Saturday. Sunday I'm biking the Ride the WAVE route with Team Wheels which is about 60 miles.

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