after a quick shower and a turkey sandwich for breakfast, i moved my roommate's bike into the basement. at 10:00 i left for MIT for the annual cambridge spring bike ride. this year's theme is "the string theory bike tour," highlighting noteworthy science and technology landmarks around town. i been on one of these bike tours 2 years ago; the best part is since it's an officially sanctioned event by the city of cambridge, we get a bike police escort for our convoy.
i took the fuji even though the trek is the most stable and safe bike i own. the reason is my trek with attached rear baskets is about the width of 3 bikes, and since i'd be riding in a crowd, i didn't want to take up a lot of space. also, though the trek is functional, it's not pretty, and i didn't want to be embarrassed riding my grocery getter.
we were supposed to meet in an empty parking lot at 10:15 next to kendall station for orientation, but there wasn't much that needed to be said. i had probably one of the older bikes there and was envious of all the shiny new rides of others. at 10:30 we began the tour.
"tour" is kind of a misnomer; we definitely ride around and see a lot of cambridge, but we never stop to get an explanation of what exactly we're seeing. that's all left to the rider, with the help of a map showing our route for the day and key landmarks with descriptions. the fun is more about riding the streets of cambridge with several hundred other cyclists and seeing the looks on people's faces as we go by.
it's also fun playing follow the leader and not have to worry about orientation and direction. there were places i recognized, but there were also times when i was riding in parts of cambridge i'd never been to before.
i knew nobody there, but i did chat with a few folks, just randomly as we biked next to each other. a man admired my fuji, said it was a classic but very heavy compared to more modern bikes. another man babbled something about the window color patterns on MIT's simmons hall. i talked with a guy who was biking and taking photos and asked him if he was having any luck (he said next year he might try a tandem bike and ride in the back to get better snapshots).
we stopped at the museum of science, before taking a circuitous route through eastern cambridge on our way to harvard square. by that point it was around noontime. once we got to inman square, i took a detour from the group and went home. my arms and shoulders hurt from riding the fuji for so long so i grabbed my biking gloves. i gathered up a few more things and raced to belmont.
once i arrived, i dropped of my things and biked to fresh pond with my camera to wait for the arrival of the bike convoy which would pass by the area. i waited half an hour and was beginning to think maybe they changed route when i finally saw them around 1:00, coming down huron avenue and up grove street to make a loop around the pond.
back at my parents' place, i went with them on a supply run to costco in everett. we took a shortcut across tufts and realized today was graduation day. at the gateway center we first visited michael's where my mother picked up a large crochet needle and an armful of clearance yarn. next stop was home depot where my father returned a bag of sand and gravel for store credit (he'd lost the receipt) and we ended up buying 2 pots of dianthus to grow around the cafe. finally we went to costco. it wasn't as busy compared to most weekends; my father thought maybe everyone was out enjoying the nice weather.
back in belmont, i ate 2 slices of pizza before falling asleep on the living room floor. my mother was at the nail salon and my father was dropping off supplies at the cafe. when my parents came home, i ate another slice of pizza before finally returning to cambridge.
what joy it is to return home with no roommate! i can let my guard down and not have to be considerate or feel that uncomfortable sensation of somebody else in the house. even better is the fact that my upstairs neighbors went away this weekend, so i have the whole place to myself. i took advantage by taking a hot bath and catching up on my television. i also ate another sloppy mango, ended up getting all sorts of fibers stuck between my teeth.