Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Bikes That Work

Often I ride my campus bike for errands, and if the weather is good--which it always is here in sunny Tucson, Arizona, USA--I'm off for lunch someplace.

I get restless sitting here in the office, and to break up the routine, I try to see if I can bike to a new lunch spot and make it back with plenty of time.

This time I rode over to Panda Express. The thing about this place is that its on the corner of the busy intersection of Swan and Grant. Driving would be a nightmare, mes amis, as traffic is always congested. With the hospital and all the doctor's offices in the area, there's always patients (usually snow birds) making their way ever so slowly to those destinations. Since it only takes me about three minutes to ride there, I arrive just before the lunch crowd. They're all trying to find parking--and if they are taking lunch to go--they're trying to squeeze back into the bumper-to-bumper traffic on Swan or Grant Rd.

On my bike, I go through and about the area with lightening speed--but what struck me was the smiles and friendliness shown me by motorists this time. Poor motorists stuck in jam so it seems. I guess they saw the freedom and ease to which I navigated my way through the dirt path next to the sidewalk--and they may have been thinking back to the days when they were a kid and rode their bike to the park, on a beautiful Spring day-- like I used to do when I was a kid back in Tulsa.

I did have to make an early errand by car before work today. As I drove back to the office I saw a few places where I could have lunch and it would be an easy five minute ride on the campus bike.

Oh yeah, when I went to Panda Express, there was this tall and strikingly beautiful Chinese woman that I recognized from the New Peking restaurant that used to be over by our place in Dog Mtn. She gave me a nice smile and extra large helpings of Orange Chicken and the new thing they're pushing--Panda Beef. Yeah, I know it does sound kind of strange, like "panda meat" but how can I say no to a pretty girl? It was a lot of food, and later in the afternoon I was finding it hard to stay awake. My head kept falling to my desk as I dozed off.

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