It’s Father’s Day and our son’s birthday and in an honor of his request that I get a little exercise, I did something I need to do more of – I hauled my perfect vintage Schwinn Beach Cruiser along with my imperfect and non-vintage ass down to Mission Beach for a morning ride on “the boardwalk,” which hasn’t had a board in it since they were replaced with concrete decades ago.
The distance from the South Mission Beach Jetty to Crystal Pier in Pacific Beach is about 2.5 miles, making two round-trips a ten mile ride. With it being my first ride of that length in months, I was pleased that neither my legs or lungs complained. My butt however is a different story. It began to whine that it hurt after about five miles, and after ten miles hurt twice as much, but I know that after a few more trips, and I hope to make one at least five days a week – it will be back into boardwalk cruisin’ shape.
For those who’ve not spent time on the boardwalk….it’s a trip! During peak periods, there are hundreds of fellow cruisers on all manner of wheeled locomotion. In order of popularity, bikes are at the top of the list, followed by skate boarders, roller skaters, dog and baby strollers, wheelchairs and shopping carts that look like home for those pushing them. Add in the pedestrian traffic of runners, race walkers, strollers and sightseers and you have the formula for two things – some really interesting people watching and the chance to inadvertently play human pinball with your fellow travelers.
The risk associated with the latter game rises steeply with the addition of those who are drunk or stoned and others who can’t seem to follow the simple rules of the road which is divided directionally by a double yellow line, a speed limit (8 MPH) and constant reminders for slower traffic to stay to the right. Those fairly simple rules are followed with about the same adherence and attention given to the rules for driving on an Interstate.
Not many people seem able to grasp rules that would keep everyone safe…..and that makes my butt hurt too.