|Michael, chic pedestrian. Outside of the Marie Antoinette I saw at Dragon*Con this was "best outfit of the day".|
|We stop for free stuff. Cold Red Bull's.|
|The bike is a found object that hangs in Java Lords all the time.|
|This frame is a part of Art Bikes.|
|This frame is displayed at Elliott Street Deli & Pub.|
|I was very happy to take a break and enjoy a fontina sandwich.|
|This was my favorite.|
|Lisa took this picture of me at the end of the ride. I was happy to have spent the day amongst cyclists.|
Public transit and I have a tumultuous relationship. Once I get into the routine of taking a certain route we're pretty good, but when I try a new route it's quite ugly. Getting to the Decatur Book Festival in the early afternoon required me to take an unfamiliar CCT bus. I missed two of them before I actually boarded a bus. I thought I missed the first bus because I read the schedule wrong, but it was running late. When I decided that I couldn't take the ungodly heat anymore (even shaded by my umbrella), I took air-conditioned refuge in a nearby business. While I was chatting with the store associate the bus showed up. The second time around, I feared that I didn't have a fare on my Breeze Card so I needed to find wifi to add trips as I had no cash. While I was scanning the area around an apartment building, the other bus showed up. This time I caught up with it, but it drove away as I approached headed up a hill and I couldn't pull the hill fast enough to meet it at the next stop. I wasn't going to let this bus beat me so I decided to regroup at an IHOP at the top of the hill and it was excellent timing on my part as I just then spotted blood oozing out of two gashes on my heel. Betty's shoe-gripping pedals really dug into me as I anxiously tried to catch that second bus. Providentially, I'd felt compelled to pack some Pochacco bandages in my purse. Nothing can hurt that much when covered with a super kawaii bandage and I chalked the whole experience up to rolling with the punches because I knew I would have fun once I got into the city.
When I finally arrived in Decatur, I was too late for the workshop I registered for. I rode around to see if there was anything else going on. Finding zilch, I decided to get on a MARTA bus and head over to the social ride that saw on ABC's Mobile Social page. Unfortunately, my transfer had expired. I thought I was going to miss yet another bus when one entrance to the Decatur station was mysteriously blocked of with police tape. After a lot of hemming and hawing, I ran to the other side, bought fares at the vending machine, and made it to the other side to catch a bus. I showed up at the Plaza Theater late, but not too late for what turned out to be an art bike ride put together by Sopo Bikes. A dozen of us headed off to see frames displayed at Java Lords in Little Five Points, Elliott Street Deli & Pub in Castleberry Hills, and Octane Coffee in West Midtown. We also took a nice lil' detour to check out the folks attending Dragon*Con. (Forgive my lack of Dragon*Con photos. I'm not that quick on the draw and I keep forgetting to put a memory card into my camera).
It was really amazing getting around Atlanta on a bike. When I lived in the city, I pretty much stuck to L5P, Virginia Highlands, and Druid Hills. It was so cool to be downtown and see motorists be cool about it too. We only got one honk and that was from a lady who wanted us to all get in the bike lane and out of her way (I'm guessing). We got shouts of encouragement from some women in an SUV with a bike on the back and some Tech (?) students wished us a "Happy Friday." At Octane, a lady asked me about the ride from the passenger seat of a car. I must admit I was doubly thrilled because she was also a black lady.
The company and the bikes along for the ride were equally cheery. Bobby and Lisa from Sopo Bikes were great hosts and there were some ABC volunteers from Starter Bikes there also. (Starter Bikes could use more volunteers as a lot of people are showing up to work on bikes). One of the riders had a Bamboo Bike built during a weekend in Brooklyn. Some riders weren't very experienced and some had been riding for some time. Just about all said that I had a "nice rack." I knew that they were referring to Betty's accoutrement, not my anatomy. However, that gives me an idea for an ironic tee shirt.