The go-to long-ass bike path around here is generally the Schuylkill Trail which heads out of Philly and leads up to Valley Forge National Park, which is a pretty long ride, and one I've only made once so far. Where the two of us ended up going is an offshoot of the Schuylkill Trail enticingly named "Forbidden Drive." It's about five or six miles of unpaved slightly hilly gravel path, but on the other hand, it winds through a beautiful wooded area with lots of shade and runs next to a nice little tributary of the Schuylkill. For reasons too obscure to get into, it would interest about five or six people in the world, half of whom may or may not even be reading this blog, that said tributary is actually the Wissahickon Creek. Dig it.
So that was good times. One thing that happens around here that I think is truly fantastic is that during the warmer times of the year, for a big block of the day over the weekends, the city closes off a big chunk of street on the west side of the Schuylkill where it runs through the middle of Philly and turns the road completely over to pedestrians and cyclists. It is glorious, friends; I dream of a day when the majority of dense urban streets are thusly regulated. But that aside, when Jeff and I hit that stretch of road after coming back from the trail, we burned down that sucker as fast as we could go. He forced me into my highest gear setting, which I've never actually used before. :) And he still beat me. On a fixed-gear! The kid is fast. :) Anyway, that particular stretch is about three miles, but it's mostly straight, mostly level, and very well-paved; in other words, an ideal street-biking location. The freedom was exhilarating, being able to just move as fast as I could power myself, knowing there would be no cross-traffic or stop signs...basically a freeway for bicycles. :)
At any rate...when we reached the end of the closed road, I called for a break and just collapsed in the grass for a while. I am sore as all hell today, I don't mind telling you. I mean, I bike around for utility, you know? It happens to be good exercise, but I don't do it for exercise, if that makes sense. What I mean is...I don't normally push myself; I just do what I do. But between yesterday's rough ride on Forbidden Drive and the race down West River Drive back in the city, I feel totally spent today. But in a good way -- like my body is telling me that I did more with it yesterday than just sitting around. So that's nice.
In any case...I've already gotten a strangely decent amount of errands completed today (on my bike, no less), so I'm feeling pretty good about that. I had also planned for today to be a laundry day, but...man, that weather just totally gets me down. So we'll see how that works out. I feel like lately I've been caught in this weird space where...I get a lot of things done, like I run errands and do chores and stuff like that, but I don't actually, like...make any progress. Like my life is still pretty much where it was before. Does it really take an expenditure of so much energy just to maintain? Or am I just spending a lot of energy on pointless tasks. Could be both. :) At any rate, today looks like it'll be more of the same, so...peace out, everybody. Hope you had a good weekend. :)