Metal Bike Commuter


I borrowed a bike last weekend

Posted in bike commute by metaljaybird on August 25, 2008
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We needed a getaway, so we drove an hour and fifteen minutes to my wife’s parents house down by the shore.  Yes, we got plenty of time in the sun, and our daughter enjoyed making (and destroying) sand castles.

While there, I got antsy to ride.  I wasn’t able to pack my bike, because my car with the roof rack was totalled.  The rental their insurance company provided does not have a roof rack, and we didn’t have enough room in the back trunk.

Luckily, my father inlaw permitted the use of one his bicycles.  I hopped on his Trek hybrid and went for a leisurely ride in the hot sun.  I enjoy riding in different areas, because I think it gives a more personal experience than driving would.

I made a loop around the Barnegat-Ocean Township area with a stop at Wells Mills County Park.  I’ve made this sort of my usual destination when riding in the area, as it has some easy, but fun trails.  There’s an old town called Brookville that seems to be eerily stuck in the early 1920s.  I kind of like the old school anyway.  When riding through, you’ll note an old church that still seems to be occuppied.  There’s also two camps, Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts.

I also rode along Route 9.  Something I would never do around here.  I have only crossed route 10, and have ridden along 46 for about a quarter of a mile.  Scary.  Route 9 down there has wide shoulders with lighter traffic, so I felt safe enough.

One negative, is that I didn’t wear a helmet.  And I enjoyed the breeze in my hair.  I’ll not make a habit of that though.

Looks like I’m not going to hit my August goal of 240 miles.  I should beat my July total, but I probably won’t be anywhere near my personal goal.  Oh well, it is a continuing trend of finishing each month with more miles than the last.

While at the shore, I ran into plenty of tourists riding rented cruises the wrong way down the road, or on the sidewalk.  I even had one lady almost take out my two year old daughter and myself as she cruised along the sidwalk when we stepped out of a local restaurant.

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8 Responses to 'I borrowed a bike last weekend'

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  1. Digital Dame said,

    Oh my gosh, you were in my old stomping grounds! Sort of. I don’t remember a town called Brookville, but I graduated from OTHS (and I’m not going to say what year, it’ll just frighten you). I used to walk to the beach in Asbury Park almost every day during the summer. Route 9 must be much improved since I last saw it, it was downright scary and old back in the dark ages. One of my sisters found some really awesome restaurants on the beach there, e-mail me if you want recommendations for the next time you’re in that area. I must have missed something, when did your car get totaled??

  2. Digital Dame said,

    Wait, nevermind… you were a good ways south of where I was. I lived in Ocean Twp. We just always referred to it as “Ocean”. Then there’s Ocean Grove, “God’s Little Acre” (I’m not kididng, there’s a sign when you drive in that says that).

  3. metaljaybird said,

    To me, anything south of Middlesex County is considered the shore. 🙂

    We hang out in Red Bank. Believe it or not, but Red Bank is a happening place these days. Just google it.

    About 8 weeks ago, my car was struck on the driver side doors while trying to cross an intersection. I guess the other driver felt it necessary to try and drive through our car instead of waiting the 4 seconds for us (well, my wife, I wasn’t in the car) to pass by.

    So, you were able to escape the East Coast once and for all? I thought about Oregon, but fear the politics to be too progressive (even for NJ).

  4. metaljaybird said,

    You know what, looks like one of the towns I rode through was just called Ocean and it might be a burb of Waretown.

  5. Digital Dame said,

    Too many things called Ocean back there! 😉

    Yes, I made my escape, many many moons ago. And it’s funny you should say that. As I’ve been sitting here thinking about being back there, I get that old, almost oppressed feeling when I imagine myself back there. It’s hard to explain. Not all my memories of NJ are bad, there are aspects of it I like very much, but I don’t think I can live there again. I like telling people stories about the Jersey Devil 🙂

    There are pockets of funkiness here, mostly in downtown Portland, and down in Eugene where the university is (college town and all), but much conservativism as well. It’s definitely different.

    I hope your wife wasn’t injured when she was hit? You didn’t say she was so I’m guessing she was ok, although no doubt shaken. I was broadsided once, but was ok.

  6. metaljaybird said,

    I don’t mind artsy funky stuff, I just can’t take overly zealous government people who impose high taxes and ridiculous laws on us common folk.

    In fact, I can be found hanging in the college towns around my parts quite frequently, most don’t mind my libertarian wackiness.

    Wife and kid (and at that point, baby) were all fine, which is most important.

  7. Digital Dame said,

    Well, we have no sales tax here, and our property taxes are about 1/3 of what my sister in NJ is paying (at least in my county. Multnomah Co. where Portland is located has much higher property taxes). We do have an income tax, which WA state does not. Many people live in WA and commute into the Portland area for work 😉

  8. metaljaybird said,

    You know, my wife loves the Northwest. I like the Southwest, but she seems to think we’d enjoy the lifestyle out there.

    You’re tempting me…


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