Friday, August 10, 2012

A nice bike ride

Susan has been away on an artist residency in Illinois this month, and Mathias returned to SC for a visit.  He is safely back in the UK and he returns to work on the 13TH.  He actually drove Susan to IL and then flew from Peoria to Pittsburgh to visit his grandparents and other Slippery Rock family members.  He spent four days in Slippery Rock and then returned to Charlotte where I picked him up in a rental car (actually a Chevy Transverse which was like driving a bus!).  He spent his last few days in SC painting part of the house, took ballet classes and worked out in a local gym.  He also had dinner with Alex and his girlfriend Erica at their small apartment, and I was actually invited to come up.  This was a nice gesture on his part, but I did not join them.  He needs to make the same offer to Susan first and make an effort to right past wrongs; then maybe we will be back on the road to having him rejoin the family. I drove him back to Charlotte on Wednesday morning where he flew to NYC, spent the day in the city, and then returned to LJ in Scotland. 

I needed to return the rental car to Enterprise at Columbia Airport by Thursday AM.  I knew I could get a ride back home from our good friends Dolly or Stephen, but I decided to pack my bike in the Traverse (could have easily packed 3 bikes in this behemoth of a car) and ride home from the airport Wednesday around 6PM.  I scouted the best way home on Google Maps (about 8.5 miles with Platt Springs Road being the main drag), drove to the airport, locked my bike, got some strange stares from people and employees, and returned the car.  I then road home.

I have never been so pleasantly surprised on a bike ride than this day.  There is a wide and safe bike lane from Lexington Ave. (at the airport) which continued all the way down Platt Springs Road to Cayce where I cut down on D Street to 9TH Street and down Center Street to the Congaree River.  There was virtually no car traffic, and because I was generally going downhill to the river, the ride was pretty easy (although it was 90 degrees outside).  I reached Vista Studios in 35 minutes (which included a detour because I initially went on the wrong street), visited with Chesley for a few minutes, and then rode home (about 1 mile).  When I drove into my driveway, my front tire went completely flat!  Lucky me.

I hope the moped remains operational until Susan returns with the car later this month.  Of course, I will be flying to Peoria on a one-way flight on August 23 (40 miles from Galesburg) and then drive her back to SC so she can stitch all the way home.  By the way, my flight to IL is quite special; I fly Delta from Columbia to Atlanta to Dallas to Minneapolis to Peoria!!  This should be interesting!  I collect lots of frequent flyer miles on this flight.