Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Another gorgeous day, so why waste it?

After yesterday's thorough drenching from the numerous showers, this morning's bright sunlight brought a sudden riot of light green. It also brought with it the promise of a great day to head out triking. With climate change, the seasons become somewhat less predictable so now, more than ever, am I reminded to head out when I can.

I had my usual breakfast of rice and awesome java. Then, once all that was digested, I showered, dressed, put on sunscreen (a must for all days of the year - even winter) and got ready to zip out for a "quick 10 k run". As the day was mine to do with what I wished, I decided to go for a good run along the numerous pathways that lace throughout the city, including here. I didn't so much have a destination in mind as a minimum number of kilometres I wanted to ride and today's was 10 kilometres, no less than 5 out and 5 back.

So, I checked my trike tires for proper inflation and otherwise suited up (meaning helmet, pant straps and sunglasses). I left and immediately found myself immersed in the tail-end of what passes for rush hour here. My trip took me up Bridlepath, crossing Hunt Club and continuing in a generally easterly direction on Daze. I crossed Bank Street, continued onto Cahill and sought the earliest exit onto the pathways, right by a bus stop. Once on the pathways, I encountered very well behaved dog owners who kept their pets on leashes and even picked up after them. Thank you guys.

What struck me was just how many joggers and other cyclists were out there on the path too and that filled me with a sense of expanded safety. It's not that Ottawa is a dangerous city (it's no more or less dangerous than most other Canadian cities) but the bike paths in suburbia can get rather sparsely used so if there is some psycho lurking in the bushes...then I can outrun 'em even though I'd rather not see one in the first place.

The other thing I noticed was that, despite the sunshine and lack of any discernible wind, it was actually quite chilly - and here it is the end of May. The day would warm up substantially later on but I wasn't there yet.

In no time did I find myself leaving the bike pathway right at the library. Sidling through the parking lot edge, it was a matter of a quick left turn onto Lorry Greenberg before I could resume my happy jaunt through suburbia once more. School was on and there were many parents or caretakers dropping kids off on the side of the road so that made for a busy portion of the day's trip. Finally, I got to the corner of Lorry Greenberg and Conroy where there was virtually no traffic to speak of. I guess rush hour ended.

I went straight through the intersection and arrived at Lorry Greenberg and Blohm. A quick right turn and the silence of the street played nicely into the stillness of the growing morning. I kept going, feeling energized by the now warming (but not too warm) air until I got to Karsh Drive. I slid around the corner, taking somewhat of a wide sweep and noticed that my trip odometer read 4.8 kilometres. Close enough, I thought and then kept curving gently around the road until I got back to Lorry Greenberg and Blohm. I turned onto Lorry Greenberg and then kept going straight through, happy that I didn't have to wait long before getting a green light.

It was only a matter of a very short while that I re-acquired the pathways around the library. I hopped onto the pathways and followed them back to Cahill. A right turn onto Cahill and I continued until I got to Albion. I decided then that rather than risk life and limb going straight through Bank and Cahill and onto Daze (I got my reasons), that I would turn left onto Albion and make up the remaining 200 metres I was short when wanting a minimum of 5 kilometres going one way. Besides, I felt energized, and both the trike and the conditions were perfect. I practically flew up Albion until I got to the top of the hill where it meets up at Bridlepath. The rest of the journey home was a speedy trip where everyone I saw smiled at me and me at them. It was truly a lovely and magnificent morning's trip. Best of all, I'm more than 1/3 of my way towards meeting my goal of 300 kilometres - and it's still just May.

Last standing was 203.5 kilometres
Today's tally was 10.5 kilometres done
That leaves me 193.0 to go as of today.

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