Sunday, February 6, 2011

Dove Speed

I have found that I am most happy on Saturday mornings when I have an adventure buddy. Yesterday I was so stoked to be adventuring with my co-worker Matt Dove. We had the responsibility of scouting the yard space for the up and coming Community Hubs events. Next Saturday YBike, Safe Routes to School, and San Francisco Bicycle Coalition will be hosting an awesome family bicycle event at Longfellow Elementary. Can’t make it on the 12th? Don’t worry, we will be hosting one at Monroe Elementary on Feb 26th and at 9 other schools through June. Are you interested in volunteering? E mail

Matt travels at my favorite speed: “not rushing,” and everything seems to turn into a community supported adventure. So when we met up at 9 am, our first mission was of course, to grab a snack. We were astonished to discover that when it is sunny and warm, people actually get out of the house at 9 am. There were lines EVERYWHERE! We found ourselves at the new Arizmendi and enjoyed some tasty baked good as we watched the crowds roll by.

From there were took San Jose to Alemany. I was very excited to see new lines on the road with designated new space for Bikes: a left turn box, a bike lane that went all the way to Alemany and one that went back to the high way. On the way back we discovered a counter flow bike lane that saved us a couple of blocks of riding! That little area still needs a little bit of signage and maybe a few kinks worked out, but I am super excited about the new change!

Unfortunately bike lanes don’t prevent flat tires and Matt’s little wheel took a screw to the rim. We had to use a screwdriver to get it out of the tire! We sat down and enjoyed the sun as I watched the pro fix flat tires. It was pretty ironic because while we were enjoying our baked goods back on Valencia, Matt divulged a secret about flat tires. Most of his Bike Party adventures the night before had consistent of Flat Tire support. Matt gets a huge kick out of helping people have a good time while they fixes their flat, so I made sure to provide the moral support this time.

From there were made our final approaches towards Longfellow, but wait! What’s that?! It’s a cell phone on the ground. Let’s find the owner. In the midst of this we make it to the Longfellow and discovered the gates were locked. The Community Hubs grant was created because the SFUSD declared one yard in each of the 11 school districts to be open to the public every Saturday. It was very important for us to see that just because it was a declaration doesn’t mean it was happening. We will have to arrange for it to be open next week.

After scouting the yard from the fence we made our way to Monroe stopping along the way to meet the neighbors, check the yard sales, and enjoy the warm sun. Monroe was unlocked and we were about to map out a course, eat some fruit and meet a family coming to play basketball. We had gotten a tip that the owner of the cell phone would be playing bingo at the first Samoan church on 26th between Dolores and Guerrero, we decided to head over there. Matt got on the bingo caller’s mic and announced who were looking for in order to return the phone. The woman was stoked, the church confused, and the kids excited about these strangers with bikes showing up at their Saturday morning hang out. A few more blocks home with belly dreams of lunch concluded our Saturday morning adventure. It is always a good time with Matt Dove.

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