Scoot Commute

“You didn’t ride?” turns into “Oh, be careful”

Posted in Buddy St. Tropez (Franz Biberkopf), Daily Commute by sbahn on 2011/01/19

We had a “blizzard” by Rhode Island standards last Wednesday, and I have had to drive the Fit to campus for the last three work days (Thursday, Friday and yesterday, Tuesday as Monday was the MLK holiday).

I had planned to play it by ear on Tuesday morning as the forecast was for anywhere from a dusting to three inches, but most likely we would only get a dusting as it’s much warmer in Providence than Burrillville. Well, I looked out the window and there were three inches of wet, heavy snow all over the place. Grrr. The car again.

The semester just started this week and I prefer to take the scoot as I have a guaranteed parking spot on campus; whereas, the car, well, I have to hunt and usually wind up in the big student lot which involves a long, cold walk and the fear of parking near 20 year old drivers.

But yesterday was just wicked. It started out as inches of snow, turned into frozen rain and sleet (what is the difference, anyway?), and ended with a cold, hard rain. Between the half-frozen slush and enormous pools of water on the streets, it was dangerous both going to and coming home from work and that was in the car. People still asked me if I rode the scoot. They seemed relieved when I said no, but also a bit, well, let down, perhaps, and thinking I’m not as hardcore as they would have liked to believe.

 

Franz Biberkopf, the Buddy, engulfed by a snowbank

Franz Biberkopf, the Buddy, engulfed by a snowbank

So this morning, come hell or frozen slush, I was gonna pull the Buddy out and ride. It was uneventful riding in, and when I was parking, one of the IT guys who had just parked, walked over and said he was behind me for quite a bit of the ride and was very concerned that I may hit a slick spot and fall. He was invisibly protecting me. Who knew?

I left later than usual because that’s just the way it is during the first few weeks of classes. It was another uneventful ride as I was taking it easy, concerned for random splotches of slush, of which there were a few here and there. But the biggest annoyance or random act of stupidity was the chick driving in front of me, who, at the blinking yellow light on Broad Street, came to a complete stop. I stopped, as did the car behind me, thinking maybe she was making the left as this is a new traffic pattern, but no movement. I gave a friendly double-honk, and still no forward movement.

I pulled to the right and went around her and gave her the WTF arm flap that I don’t think anyone understands but it makes me feel better. I only had a few more blocks to go and as I was preparing to turn onto my street, I peeked into the mirror and they were still sitting there. Perhaps they’ll be there all night.

Only on Broad Street can some idiot think a blinking yellow means stop and wait forever. Maybe she’s waiting for a train to pass or the invisible school bus to move?

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