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Old 12-16-04, 09:37 PM
sbhikes's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Still in Santa Barbara
Posts: 4,920

Bikes: Catrike Pocket, Lightning Thunderbold recumbent, Trek 3000 MTB.

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I have a hill like that. Narrow, two lane, no shoulder, my lowest granny gear, and packed with traffic, much of it big diesel trucks that barely fit in their own lane without me in it. I hate this hill. I have no other choice because my office is right at the top of it. On the left side is a horse trail. I've pushed my bike up it a few times, but it adds 10 minutes and a back ache. They put another horse trail on the right, but that one is so steep I can't haul my bike up it. I can't see how a horse can do it, either.

Anyway, I'm a wimpy almost 40 woman riding a geeky recumbent of all things. I stay to the right as far as I can, but it's not too far because besides having no shoulder, the right two feet is full of eucalyptus pods, bark and branches that fall off. The cars and trucks just have to wait. That's all there is too it.

Going in a half hour early means less traffic. That's a strategy.

I started commuting for the same reasons you mentioned. Hate the traffic and the gas station and all the maniacs running me off the road. I first started with a Vespa. But I gained weight riding the Vespa because it's even less exercise than a stick shift car. So I added biking a couple days a week.

Now, instead of frustration and anger I get amazing sunrises and sunsets as I bike along the beach, and tranquility as I ride by the bird refuge and beauty as I ride by the beautiful gardens of the rich and famous. Winter in Santa Barbara is the most beautiful time of year and rather than throwing an hour or so of my life down a void every day I'm actually out there living it. I feel healthier and it helps with the stress of the job.
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