First, Elizabeth and I went to Semillitas, the Spanish playgroup. It is on Ross Street, which is 3.0 miles away from our home. Not that far, but there is a big bridge that goes over the railway lines, on Mill Road. Mill Road is a very cool, very hip road with all these shopsy-shops, and international restaurants and independent cafes. The bridge is probably not very steep in real life, but in bike life, it's a little bit intense. Especially with a 20+ lb baby on the back - confession: I have no idea how much Eliz actually weighs. The last time I sneakily weighed her was at the kiosk at the post office when I was mailing something. Truth.
Here is what the bridge looks like:
|This is the only photo I could find of the bridge - it's during a Christmas fair, so they must have closed it off to traffic.|
Normally, there aren't people on it, but there are always cars. See how there's no bike lane? Yeah, so you're huffing it up this hill, trying to look like it's no big deal, and the cars do that 'hover and creep along' thing behind you until there's a gap in the other lane, then they pull out and go around you. It makes you really feel super slow, and a little bit worried that your baby is going to start dancing and moving, and in doing so, make your bike wobble around with the weight of her helmet, which in turn makes you look like a drunk biker at 10 am. Here is an accurate picture of what the bridge feels like:
So anyways. We got to Semillitas, and met our friends Helen & Amy there. Helen was going to take care of Elizabeth while I went to get my hair done (yaaaaay!!!). So I left Semillitas, went back over the bridge to Ainsworth street (about 1 mile) for my hair appointment. I had my hair done, yada yada, went back across the bridge to meet up with Eliz, Helen & Amy (so, another 1 mile - and, back over the bridge, obvs.)
Then Eliz and I went into town (1.2 miles, and yeppers, that stinking bridge again) to buy me a dress to wear to our friends Morgan & Regan's wedding next week. Boy, was that fun - shopping for a dress with a toddler = kind of traumatic. At one point, when I was trying to peel this dress off because the zipper was stuck, so my arms were stuck over my head, Eliz decided to crawl out under the curtain and start sticking her head into other changing rooms. Awesome. Anyways, we lasted for one store, and then abandoned that mission to go home (2.2 miles). (FYI: I think I found a dress. It's really pretty and blue-green.)
Yesterday was Thursday, so I had my Spanish class in the evening - close to where Semillitas is. So back onto the bike I went, 3.2 miles and across that bloody bridge. Class was muy bien, and we learned to conjugate a few verbs, as well as the few pronunciation rules in Spanish. Example: "ce" sounds like "say", whereas "que" sounds like "kay" - as in cerveza vs. queso. For some reason, the people in my class had a hard time with that... ???
Yesterday was also my friend Rachael's birthday party. So after my class, I went into town to a lounge called Hidden Rooms - 2.1 miles, and the last time I went over that expletive-bridge. Oh, and guess what: it was raining. And the wind had really picked up - it went up to 47 km/h yesterday. I am not even joking: check it out. This is what the Mill Road bridge feels like in that wind:
When I got to the lounge, it was karaoke night... and guess what: karaoke is exactly the same in England as in Canada: every song is about 2 minutes too long, the audience and most of the singers only know the chorus, and the only people who listen to the singer are the singer's friends. But when your friends are singing, it's kinda fun. Rachael & I sang Twist and Shout - I was about 85% too sober for it to be truly entertaining, but we did our best. I was proud to have chosen a song that is only 2:30 seconds, with the shortest section with no singing. What are karaoke singers supposed to do during the guitar and drum solos???
And then, I got back on the bike, to go home (1.9 miles). Thank goodness: it was a flat ride. Just as I was leaving the lounge, I called Matthew to say I was coming home - he told me there was no milk. And guess what: it was 11:03, and every single shop on the way home closes at 11. Screw you, England!! I had no choice: I Mummy-ed up. The local pub was still open. I popped into the good old Milton Arms, still wearing my bike helmet, with my water bottle from class, and bought my baby a pint of milk!! Bahaha! Even better than that was the super drunk British dudes that said things like, "'Allo, 'allo, where you been all night, gorgeous?" as they stumbled over to me while I waited for my pint of milk.
I forgot to take a photo of the full water/milk bottle, but here is the evidence:
Holy cow - I cycled 15.6 miles yesterday! I only just added that up!! That is 25 km!! Who am I? And the most amazing part of that, is that I didn't even question it. It wasn't like, "Oh man, I have to bike all the way to _____??". What a change in attitude - when did that happen, I wonder?