Welcome guest, is this your first visit? Click the "Create Account" button now to join.

To disable ads, please log-in.

Shop at TeamEstrogen.com for women's cycling apparel.

Results 1 to 13 of 13
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    South Central PA
    Posts
    190

    Talking Comical First "Commute"

    To disable ads, please log-in.

    Since I work from my home office 99% of the time, I don't have the opportunity to commute properly. Inspired by my husband and you ladies here, I thought that maybe I could "commute" by running some of my errands on my Surly-Girl "Ethel". I make regular trips to the post office for work every week (9 miles round trip) plus other trips (bank, library, hardware store) that I could certainly do on a bike. I had gotten as far on this plan as asking my son if I could use his old backpack, the one with the hole in the bottom.

    Today at about 10 minutes before 4:00, as I am about to leave (in the car) for the post office with an express mail package, my son shows up in the kitchen with the backpack. "See the hole isn't that big Mom. Not big enough for a letter to slip through." So, I am thinking, "what better time than the present?" The post office doesn't close until 4:30. Just 4 miles. Plenty of time. It's about 42 degrees, damp and very windy. I spend about 10 minutes getting my gear on. I've been wanting to try my new Terry heavy weight tights so this is the perfect opportunity to try them out. If I'm too hot, well, it's a short ride. At 4:00 I'm starting down the driveway. The wind is really whipping and I've been sitting at my desk all day so brrrr.... I think maybe I better trade this heavy jersey in for my windbreaker. A quick trip back to the house. Off comes the backpack and the jersey. On with the Windstopper. I was proud of myself for remembering to get the credit card out of the pocket of the jersey. At 4:03 I jump back on Ethel, down the driveway. I get out to the road and realize that something is wrong. I'd forgotten the backpack with the extremely important express package!! This wouldn't be so bad, but our driveway is 1/4 mile long, gravel, with a very steep grade returning to the house. I turn around, put her into granny gear and head back up to the house. I'd never climbed our drive that fast! I'm thinking maybe I better give up and jump in my car. This package must go today. But darn, I hate for my first try at commuting to be a failure. Maybe the second try, but not the first! It's 4:09 by the time I retrieve the package. 4 hilly miles. Hmmm... quick calculation... plenty of time.

    Back on Ethel. Back down the driveway. Pedaling as hard as I can. I didn't know the Surly Girl can go that fast! Three miles in. A gradual climb the whole way. I check my iPhone. 4:20. Dang, it's Friday, holiday weekend, quiet country post office (I'm the biggest customer). I'll be there in 5 minutes but I hope the postmaster doesn't close early! I'm pedaling fast up the last hill, steering with the left hand, calling my son with the right, "Call the post office and tell Postmaster Eileen to wait for me!!" (Do you know that you can't dial an iPhone with your gloves on, but you can dial with your tongue?!?) "Chill Mom, you have 10 minutes."

    I make it to the post office with 5 minutes to spare, sweating buckets, nose running, laughing my a** off. Package successfully delivered, I came home the long way at a leisurely pace, enjoying the cool darkening evening, the Christmas lights, and I decided my first "commute" was a success.
    "No hour of life is wasted that is spent in the saddle" -Winston Churchill

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Uncanny Valley
    Posts
    14,501
    Quote Originally Posted by Ritamarie View Post
    (Do you know that you can't dial an iPhone with your gloves on, but you can dial with your tongue?!?)
    You cracked me up. Great job! (And, great job crossing your eyes well enough to see where your tongue is dialing! I could never manage that.)
    Speed comes from what you put behind you. - Judi Ketteler

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    where the wind comes sweeping down the plain
    Posts
    5,251
    That was quite an ordeal for your first attempt! I commend you for not just saying "to heck with it" and jumping in the car (like I might have done).
    Way to go and congrats!!!

    oh, and thanks for the laugh. I imagined you dialing your phone with your tongue. HA!
    Check out my running blog: www.turtlepacing.blogspot.com

    Cervelo P2C (tri bike)
    Bianchi Eros (commuter/touring road bike)

    1983 Motobecane mixte (commuter/errand bike)
    Cannondale F5 mountain bike

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Oslo, Norway
    Posts
    4,066
    fantastic story I had no idea you could dial with your tongue!

    Bike commuting is great but it does help not having deadlines. I'm continually underestimating the time it takes me to get anywhere (hey, it feels like I'm going really fast, right?) not to mention I still think it takes me 5 minutes to get dressed and 10 minutes to shower and change at the other end.
    Winter riding is much less about badassery and much more about bundle-uppery. - malkin

    1995 Kona Cinder Cone commuterFrankenbike/Selle Italia SLR Lady Gel Flow
    2008 white Nakamura Summit Custom mtb/Terry Falcon X
    2000 Schwinn Fastback Comp road bike/Specialized Jett

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Newport, RI
    Posts
    3,821
    I thought for sure the package had fallen through the hole! Great story! Glad it worked out!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Columbia, MO
    Posts
    2,041
    Quote Originally Posted by lph View Post
    Bike commuting is great but it does help not having deadlines. I'm continually underestimating the time it takes me to get anywhere (hey, it feels like I'm going really fast, right?) not to mention I still think it takes me 5 minutes to get dressed and 10 minutes to shower and change at the other end.
    ME TOO. It drives me crazy. And anyone who is trying to plan anything with me. But most of all my husband, who believes me when I say I'll be back in 3 hours and worries for the other 2 hours!!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Looking at all the love there that's sleeping
    Posts
    4,171
    Quote Originally Posted by redrhodie View Post
    I thought for sure the package had fallen through the hole!
    That's where I thought the story was going, too!
    Way to work in the speed workout!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Olney, MD
    Posts
    3,063
    Congrats!

    I've operated my iPhone with my nose, but never my tongue!
    I'd rather be swimming...biking...running...and eating cheesecake...
    --===--

    2008 Cervelo P2C Tri bike
    2011 Trek Madone 5.5/Cobb V-Flow Max
    2007 Jamis Coda/Terry Liberator
    2011 Trek Mamba 29er

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Beautiful NW or Left Coast
    Posts
    5,619
    you dialed with your tongue? um. wow!

    great commute story!!
    I like Bikes - Mimi
    Watercolor Blog

    Davidson Custom Bike - Cavaletta
    Dahon 2009 Sport - Luna
    Old Raleigh Mixte - Mitzi

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    3,176
    Very impressive!

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Uncanny Valley
    Posts
    14,501
    I wonder if it got cold enough, would your tongue stick to your phone?
    Speed comes from what you put behind you. - Judi Ketteler

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    South Central PA
    Posts
    190
    Thanks for the comments and encouragement! Even as unprepared as I was, I enjoyed it totally, so I'll continue to try to go by bike for any errands I don't need to transport something big (like a kid). Hopefully, I'll get better and more organized! It will be a great way to work in some extra miles at the end of a workday. I have to go the the post office anyway, don't I? What a great excuse to get on my bike. The miles could add up, to say nothing of the gas and miles saved on my vehicle!

    Dialing with your nose... I'll have to try that!
    "No hour of life is wasted that is spent in the saddle" -Winston Churchill

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Between the Blue Ridge and the Chesapeake Bay
    Posts
    5,203
    Great story, Ritamarie! I'm a post office commuter, too, working from home. I'm off the bike for at least a month with a wrist injury, so I got myself a magnetic trainer to "commute" to and from work every day.

 

 

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •