Location: Madison, WI, USA
Started bike commuting: August 2010
Commute distance (one way): 2 miles (7ish if I take a lakeside ride!)
Describe your commute: After a short jaunt around Monona Bay (wave hi to the waterfowl! just now there’s a shy but beautiful male hooded merganser out there), head up Main Street to the Southwest Bike Path. Zip (or chug, if the headwinds are mean) down to the underpass near the Kohl Center, then up the hill to Dayton, around the dorm construction, across Johnson and University, and down a bumpy alleyway to park on Library Mall. When the weather is good, I’ll take the Harold Temin Lakeshore Path to Eagle Heights and back before I go home in the evening. Great end-of-day stressbuster.
Describe your bike and accessories: “Pleione” is a purple Electra Townie 7d. She has silver-colored fenders and rear rack (both from Electra), Wald rear baskets (for the farmer’s market, and for hauling 30-lb. boxes of theses across campus), a politeness bell, a drink-bottle bracket, and silver decals on her frame that spell her name. I have a Planet Bike red light attached to my messenger bag, and a Blaze half-watt LED headlight attached to my standard-issue Giro helmet. I need to rig a skirt guard for her (Pleione’s only fault is that her brakes are skirt-eating monsters), but haven’t figured out quite how yet.
What bit of advice would you like to share with new bike commuters?: Don’t scorn a bike in an unusual color. Drivers, pedestrians, and other bike commuters all seem to get a kick out of Pleione the Ineffably Purple!
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