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60 degrees and sunny

If you don't talk to your cat about catnip, who will?

Sadly, I do not have a picture of this sign outside a veterinarians' office, because I passed it while merging into a rotary.

And, also, my camera batteries were apparently kaput, so if I had stopped I would have been sorely disappointed.

It was a ride of entertaining signs, howling wind, and way too much traffic (though all of it friendly), running up to the Reading REI to return something. Of course, this is never really a way to save money, as I always find something else there I "need". This time, a new reflective vest and yet another chain-cleaning brush because I always feel guilty about how filthy I tend to leave my bikes. I do always wipe off the grit with a rag, but a lot of people really, really get their steeds clean. I...mostly am just OK with replacing parts more often, but every once in a while I feel the need to buy more cleaning things that will likely end up in the bottom of my gear trunk.

But the main thing I was pondering as I rode was: Places that I go to usually via freeway in the car always seem too far away to bike.

Which is silly.

It's kind of ridiculous how close Reading is, but I always drive via 93&128, so it's two freeways away, and thus Far Away.

On surface streets, it's pretty much exactly 10 miles. I went a little further on the way back because I decided to try to avoid downtown Wakefield, since it was a madhouse on the way out.

Instead of avoiding traffic, though, I managed to take a wrong turn and hit the Woburn Mall traffic monstrosity, plus the actual Woburn town center. Alas. Traffic was still courteous about letting me through, which was a nice change of pace. I didn't quite go past my old workplace, but near enough to spend part of the ride home thinking about how my commute from my current house to my old job would have been a really nice year-round commute, if I'd ever lived here and worked there at the same time and been in shape to do 5 miles at non-sweating pace. Which I am now, easily, but I hadn't learned to slow down then. There's an art to that -- moving quickly enough to get some place in good time, but never letting the heart really get pounding and the pores opening. Today, I didn't bother keeping under that, although I wasn't trying to go fast, either.

In summary: yay, spring! Yay, running errands without a car!

[This entry was originally posted at http://bikingandbaking.dreamwidth.org/608.html. Please comment wherever is most convenient, but please use the DreamWidth version if sharing/linking.]