Riding daily in Chicago can get somewhat stale – same old, same old – and sometimes I yearn to escape the city and frolic among wild flowers and cows and stuff. Unfortunately, a true country adventure would involve a rental car or train and a lot of planning. One city ride that always seems somewhat like a country adventure is the ride from my northside neighborhood to visit my friends in Hyde Park on the southside (Obama’s neighborhood!). A 30-mile round trip, the ride goes straight down Lake Michigan almost entirely on the Lakefront Trail. The first half is exactly my daily commute, but the second half is much more relaxing and scenic.
This weekend we made the trip to have brunch with friends. Along the way, we stopped to smell the roses – or whatever these are – and appreciate their beauty.
I adore the south side of the Lakefront Trail and wish I had an opportunity to ride it more often. The south portion is mercifully free of tacky palm trees (they’re not fooling anyone), volleyball nets (a volleyball hit Greg in the head while commuting last summer – the indignity!), shirtless rollerbladers (out of my way, Steven Seagal), and clueless tourists (too scared of the south side). Instead, notwithstanding the Lakefront Drive traffic noise, I can imagine that I’m cycling down a country seaside lane.
When the trail gets closer to the city and loses its nature appeal, the exchange of a gorgeous skyline is mollifying. Unfortunately, our day today was rainy and chilly (check out my wool socks and sandals, stylin’) but still good to be alive.
If we had taken the subway or somehow gotten a car to drive to our friend’s brunch, half of the day’s fun would have been robbed from us. And that’s no way to live!