Experimental music, photography, and adventures

Commute day two: a little better

Tuesday, March 13th, 2007

My ride home last night was completely uneventful. I unzipped the legs from my convertible pants so I could wear shorts home, and rode around the corner to the bike shop where I got my bike. I wanted to see what they had in the way of racks and rack bags/panniers. They didn’t have a whole lot, they had some grocery bag-type panniers (which don’t close) and some Ortlieb panniers. Ortlieb makes some great stuff, but it’s just too expensive ($120 for a pair of panniers … and that’s a good price). They were out of rack bags.

The ride home took me about 15 minutes or so. I did have to wait a bit to cross the Bypass — it wasn’t too bad, but again, the students are gone now, so it’ll be worse in the future. I feel like something should be done about the intersection between the bike path and he Bypass, because while I like riding on the bike path, that street crossing can be very problematic. There is no stop sign or light, and it’s a busy street — it can take a while before it’s possible to cross. It’s almost tempting to simply do that part of the ride on 10th Street, so I can avoid having to cross the Bypass without a light. It’s a real shame that we have this nice bike path — the nicest part of my ride, probably — but its utility is undermined by the fact that it dumps you out onto a busy street that’s difficult and dangerous to cross.

My commute this morning went well. It was very similar to yesterday’s ride, only it was warmer, and I encountered even less traffic. I pretty much rode straight across campus without stopping. I did have to stop at both stoplights on my way here, but only briefly.

I got here fairly early, and changed in the storage room this time. I was much better than changing in the bathroom stall, but I did have to wait for some people to dump their recycling first. It was a little nerve-wracking changing in there, since someone could enter at any time — however, I was hidden in this back section, and would have been able to be decent by the time they got back there. I brought my other pair of shoes today, and I’m planning on leaving both pairs (black/brown) here most of the time.

I still had a problem with being a bit too sweaty. Maybe I need to ride a little slower in the morning to avoid that, or maybe I just have to get used to it. I hear tell of a shower in this other company’s area, but I don’t have access to it. I could ask about getting access, I guess, but I’m not really sure if that’s a good idea.

I’ve had a camera with me during these commutes, but I haven’t stopped to take any photos yet. Maybe I will on my way home today — after work will probably be a better time to take photos, since I won’t have to worry about getting to work on time.

It’s supposed to rain the next couple of days, and while I want to try commuting in the rain sometime, I don’t think I’m ready to do that just yet, so I’ll probably drive instead.

3 Responses to “Commute day two: a little better”

  1. furiousball Says:

    Ask for access and if they say no, put some Al Gore-style guilt on their ass. “Guess you hate the earth…earth hater.”

  2. Patrick Says:

    Hi there. Congratulations on commuting to work by bike! From my experience, sweaty back is ok; your commute is only 3 miles, and you could possibly just sit at your desk for about 30 minutes before changing into your “work” clothes. This is ok where I work, and that’s what I do. The sweat is dry by then, and makes changing easier. It also allows you to cool down before putting on your other clothes. Keep some clothes at work that you can wear multiple days (if you sit all day in an air-conditioned office like me). Pants can go multiple days without washing, unless you are a sweaty pig and don’t have good hygiene:-) Undershirts are good to wear for this reason; you can wear your same shirt later in the week, if you don’t mind doing that. I’m in hot Texas, so if I can do it, you can too! A fan is good to keep in your cube to help dry your bike clothing. Have fun commuting!

  3. Smudgemo Says:

    If it is cool out and you are still sweating from your ride, are you warm when you leave? You should feel fairly chilly and warm up as you go. I use a vest a lot that keeps my trunk warm, but not overly warm. Unzipping it as my ride progresses regulates temperature well. Depending on your needs, you should be able to get some fairly inexpensive panniers. The Ortliebs are waterproof, but most aren’t, so be sure to use plastic bags when rain is forecast.

    As for rain, a cycling rain cape and fenders are the way to go. I don’t mind getting caught in a downpour on the way home, but heading to work is an entirely different issue. Dry shoes, socks and pants taken along or left at work are important since those get wet even with fenders and a cape.

    Sometimes my ride in is so much fun that I arrive sweaty from pushing it. I don’t even care. It dries after awhile and the smile on my face from passing dozens of cars stuck in traffic is priceless.

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