I decided to take my Dad’s old van to work today. I stopped at the gas station to put some gas in the car and grab a soda before my 8 mile commute down the interstate to the bike shop. I kept thinking that I wished I had ridden my bike in, rather than drive, but I had a lot of old gear that I was taking down to the shop to get rid of, so it was a necessary evil.
About two miles down the interstate, traffic immediately came to a standstill. We were going nowhere, and by the pace of the first 5 minutes of traffic, we would be there for a while. After several minutes, cars started creating another lane in the shoulder around the two normal lanes of traffic. It was getting crazy. Unfortunately, so was the temperature of my engine. I noticed the temperature gauge on the inside of the car start rising at a fairly abnormal rate and started to get worried.
After a few minutes of rising temperatures, the van started overheating and smoking. My first instinct was to say, “Crap.” I had to wait for a hole in the “shoulder traffic” to move the van into the grass on the side of the road and park the van. I had to get to work and didn’t have a ride, so… I pulled my bike out of the back of the van and prepared for my commute in to the bike shop.
It was pretty neat riding around and through all the traffic jam. It was especially fun to see the cops at the top of the exit ramp, looking at me like, “What did you just do?” The thrill was fun for a second, but wore off when I remembered that I WAS wearing rolled up blue-jean trousers and sandals for the last 6 miles of my commute… sheesh!
I kept reminding myself of a video I spotted a few weeks back. In the video, a group of cyclists take to the LA Freeway during rush hour to show how fast they could ride in comparison to the cars. It was awesome! Bottom line today was, you just never know what you’re gonna run into when you head off to work.