It was a two part, actually three and a half part, ride home. I initially rode from my office to Revolution Cycles in Georgetown, to which I had a coupon for 20% of anything in stock. I walked around for a little, but I might have hit peak bike shit and I couldn't find anything that really even caught my eye. For a while I was walking around holding some socks, but how lame it that? That coupon runs out today. I suppose I could use it on some new cleats or maybe some Simple Green, but I could also just wait until my next month's commuter benefit gets here and pick that up for free.
Coming down from work to Georgetown wasn't especially eventful. I don't know what makes some days more heavily trafficked than others. I think, though, in the "summer" (which starts in the next two weeks), the colleges might empty out and perhaps that will reduce some congestion? I don't really know. I've always been a bit dubious of claims that students are somehow responsible for the preponderance of automobile traffic in these areas (AU Park, Glover Park, Burleith, Georgetown), but maybe I just have a soft spot in my heart for cars and students. Wait a minute- that doesn't sound like me at all!
I attended a Greater Greater Washington-sponsored (hosted?) happy hour last night at Tynan in NoMa, which is a neighborhood established by Boston expats trying to recapture the glorious days of misery before 2004 and named after their icon (this might not actually be true). Going east to west and vice versa by bike in this city doesn't always have an obvious clear path. It's also hard to do if you don't like riding in traffic circles, across diagonal streets or on streets with no clear bike infrastructure (as of now). So, I set off down M Street and then it started raining. Since I was wearing work clothes and these were the clothes I intended to wear to the happy hour and I didn't want to arrive soaked, I decided to stop in front of the Intermix in the Geogetown Park mall and avail myself of their awning. I decided that the "smart play" (note: not actually that smart, just sort of obvious) would be to put on my jacket and turn on my lights. With that done, I set off again and it immediately stopped raining.
So, here's how I go across town. I take M to Penn to L. You're only on Penn for a little and it's important to get over into the left lane in order to turn onto L. You can normally do this pretty easily, especially if you take a more liberal view of your ability to move through a red light prior to its technically turning green. Anyway, if you can't get over, you can just stop at Penn and 25th Street and then cross at the crosswalk and get on L. L street is a pretty nice bike street because its wide and it's frequently used by cyclists, so motorists in general know to look out. You can ride on the left side if you want because that's where the parking/loading is and there's normally a little "gutter" there between a parked or idling car or delivery van and the left lane marking. Generally, I like to ride on the right though. I took L to Massachusetts and then past Mount Vernon square, a left on 7th and then a right on K. This K Street isn't like highway K street- it's fairly sedate even. Then, it was K to 1st NE and then up to N. So, that's how I got there. It was a nice time and I met some nice people.
Coming home was much the same way until Mount Vernon Sqaure, then it was I street, which is one way west to Pennsylvania. If you ever need to choose who would win a race down I street between me in street clothes on a Cross Check and some dude on a metallic lime green Vespa, pick me.
I was back in Arlington before it started to rain. It didn't rain hard so that was nice. It was dark, so I didn't notice that the little stretch of Henderson between Glebe and George Mason had been ripped up for repaving. I hope that they put some sharrows on it when it's repainted.