Monday, December 23, 2013

Biking Columbia City

See, it snowed, now to take out my bike snowplow
Last week we did take an adventure to take stuff to the Goodwill. We made our way down to Columbia City to do some shopping before the impending snowstorm we were suppose to have starting Thursday evening. I don't know what was happening but people were driving crazy. You would think that something really important was happening. Now, we were not worried about the snow but it seems that all those law abiding people in their metal machines were too busy to think about stopping at stop signs and red lights. You know, it is so over to obey the law. So, I have been feeling really anti car lately. I think what blew me over the top was the guy getting hit by the car on the 2nd Ave. painted lane. The ladies response was, "I didn't see you!". No, Shitake Mushroom! Don't drive if you can't see. I DO have a drivers licence and occasionally drive a car2go. Guess what? I actually drive that thing just like a bike. What does that mean? When I come to the crosswalks I make sure I see if people are not crossing and when the light is going from yellow to red I actually slow down rather than speed up and try to blow through a red light.

As you may remember, my kid came down with the lovely barfing virus. My kid got better but it looks like that virus is really contagious even if the kid is not barfing so we did the smart thing and kept her home. On Saturday at midnight I was hit by something very similar. Now that I am pregnant it was hard to tell at first if this was morning sickness or what. Well, by the 4th time I barfed I figured it was the same thing. By Sunday morning I was feeling better so we did a deep clean starting with the bathroom. I can't wait around for a maid to come so we put on the rubber gloves and cleaned the bathroom and my daughter did a good wipe down of other common surfaces like doorknobs and anything else people touch. As morning was hitting us on Sunday Mr. Peyos came down with something similar but expressed it in a different way, which is way too much information to go into detail. As of Monday he is still down for the count. Poor guy. Being sick with a beard sucks!
Apparently pink is NOT Hi-Viz enough!
After half a day of scrubbing and washing laundry I told my daughter I wanted to take her old bike to BikeWorks for donation. What I thought was going to be another Edgerunner adventure turned into my kid wanting to bike all the way there and home again. So, instead of loading up the Edgerunner with the old bike and biking behind her I decided to walk the bike. She bikes slow and her bike is one gear so it makes going up slight hills harder. She biked and I pointed out that she can't just zoom through an intersection as people might not see her despite all that pink. I know, it is our fault if we get hit because we aren't wearing balloons, clown suit and blinking lights. How rude of us!
Goodbye trust bike, enjoy your new home.
We made it to BikeWorks and left the old bike. It was really quiet there except it was nice to see a family coming out, maybe they were going to buy a bike in winter, YEAH!! Yeah, so glad someone can ride that bike. We really didn't need one more bike in the house.
Does it looks like I need another bike in this corner?
On our way home we got to our usual crosswalk. I am talking about the one on Holly and Rainier. Seriously, the city needs to put traffic calming there. I get so tired of seeing people blow through the red light. Maybe a red light camera but Mr. Peyos said that it probably doesn't get enough traffic. I always try to catch offenders but it is hard watching my kid and taking a picture.

Before we got here let me back up...While we were leaving the Columbia City library we almost got hit by someone in the Jewish community making and illegal left turn into the library parking lot. When they realized it was us we got the apologetic stare. Seriously!! What was so illegal about that turn? For the most part, Rainier Ave. has the double yellow line. What does this mean? Let's look at the Washington State Driver Handbook: Page 31 states: Solid Double Yellow Lines, no passing allowed. It says no passing so figure out some other way to pull into that driveway, okay. I mean, do I have to constantly look every way because someone is going to do something illegal? My answer, YES!

You see, it is illegal. We know one friend who doesn't do this and the other day we came upon her in her van when we were trying to capture on camera the best place to get these illegal turns: Morgan/Rainier Ave.

So, if you want to make the Rainier Valley more walk able then start by obeying the laws and look out for people. Rainier/Holly sports a crosswalk for a school and a senior center. How much longer do we have to perpetuate this car culture? Kids get tired of walking 3 blocks it is ridiculous. I hate taking other kids with us anywhere because they get tired. We even tone down our pace and distance but NO, they get tired. I get tired of walking right now because I got this baby but biking is nothing. I just sit there and pedal. How hard is that? I was motivated to walk today because my kid wanted to bike in the Seattle drizzle. She didn't care that it felt like spit the whole way but she knew she had the right gear to keep her from getting wet. As much as it is fun to take friends for adventures I can't do that right now. That can get heavy and I am not interested in dumping the bike and biking pregnant with an extra load I am not used to.

So, that was our brief biking adventure followed by the perils of being a pedestrian.See, why I don't like walking so much.


  1. RCW 46.61.130 part 3 clearly states that the double yellow lines do not apply to cars turning into driveways. But drivers should still be watching for pedestrians on the sidewalk before making the left turn.

    1. Thanks Anonymous. Is a driveway or a parking lot? What is the difference. The double yellow line still doesn't explain all the illegal turns on to Morgan.


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