Tuesday, January 18, 2011

My Joyous Winter Commute

Cheery Sight, N. Main Street, Providence
I don't want to call it a commute, as that implies a chore that one does because it is required to complete the obligation of going or coming from work.  Rather call it a joyous experience riding a bicycle that happened to have my work place as its destination.

I had the joy of handling the bicycle on slushy streets that had been plowed or driven before I transited them, though this pleasure can pale quickly after a few blocks as the hands tire from keeping the wheels under me and the body warms.

First Tracks
I had the first experience of making first tracks on several side streets near my home on a bicycle path and the unplowed office parking lot.  The crunch of the snow and the sure footing it offered engendered the feeling of exploration in my neighborhood despite its daily familiarity.   At the office, the crunch of snow, and the unsullied expanse of white pulled at me such that I took a couple of circuits of the front parking lot just to continue the thrill of riding through accumulation of fluffy, uncrushed snow and leave my ephemeral mark.

Along the way, I also had the exhilaration of being not entirely under control as the bike slid faster than the wheels were turning on a well traveled road and somewhat cleared road resulting in a slippery surface.  It was almost skiing, while balancing on two small points with naught but balance and precession to keep upright.

Snow Accumulation through helmet holes
It was hard not to uselessly gloat over coworkers that I had such a fun trip to the office when they were arriving to work disgusted, annoyed and late.

And while the weather had warmed, and the rain was falling steadily, even the trip home was not disheartening.  Arriving home mostly dry, thoroughly pleased to have completed a new challenge in choosing not to use a car on a daily basis, and preferring the bicycle to transit.