Thursday, September 30, 2010

Day Four: A Monsoon Will Not Deter Me

With Jon officially moving to Van Ness today, this morning was my last "easy" commute to work on RideOn Route 81 from his apartment across from the White Flint metro.  Turns out Route 46, the one I was looking for the other day when I stumbled on the 81 as it was pulling up, has its stop on Rockville Pike, not on Marinelli where I was looking.  (Thanks Alexis).  The 81 and I had some awesome times, but all good things must come to an end.

With Hurricane Snooki Nicole dumping cats and dogs on our region, today was the first time my commute really necessitated an umbrella.  It wasn't bad for just taking the RideOn in this morning, but I was really hoping that it wouldn't damper my plans for my PM commute: running to Twinbrook then transferring connecting to RideOn Route 5 from Twinbrook to Silver Spring.  I even walked over to the CVS in Rockville Town Center to pick up new insoles for my running shoes at lunch time.

As 5:00 approached, the skies turned more and more foreboding, but I was determined.  I don't mind running in the rain that much - my main concern is always being prepared so that my iPhone does not get wet.  (Because, let's be real, if something happened to my iPhone... well...)  I scoured the Sixth Floor for a ziplock bag to carry it in, and was beginning to think all was lost, until REBECCA came through with a gallon size ziplock.  I owe you one Rebecca.  Several co-workers warned me to "be careful out there" on my way out, but I wasn't worried.

When I got outside, however, it was drizzling and it did look like the end of days, so I thought I should try to get to the Twinbrook metro with a heightened sense of urgency.  (Taking the Q4 was an option this whole time - but I didn't want to wimp out).  Luckily for me, the Twinbrook metro is about 2.5 miles from my office, which is also the distance I can irresponsibly push the pace of a run without really feeling the consequences later.  Any further though, and my shins decide they hate me for several days.  So I took off on the southbound side of Rockville Pike.  The rain started to pick up a little just as a Route 46 bus pulled up to my left, which would have taken me as far down the Pike as I had needed - quite a temptation, but I resisted: so much so that I took the next opportunity to cross the Pike over to the northbound sidewalk, meaning a RideOn bus would not tempt me in such a way again.  The rain persisted and I pushed the pace a little more, realizing that I had left the office without being entirely sure of where the Twinbrook metro was... "Twinbrook Parkway?" I thought.  It felt like a trick.

AND IT WAS.  Good thing I was paying attention, and was on the lookout for the green Metro sign telling me to turn left on Halpine Road.  I wasn't sure what time it was, with my phone tucked away in the safety of the ziplock, but I was shooting for the 5:45 Route 5 bus.  Turns out I was so worried about getting caught in the rain, I booked it down to Twinbrook in time for the 5:33.

The Route 5 bus takes an interesting route to Silver Spring - passing through North Bethesda and Garrett Park before heading up 16th Street.  For a while I was on a street called Capitol View I think?  Definitely learning new ways of getting around Montgomery County everyday I undertake this adventure, which I love.

I walked in the door to my apartment at 6:29, one hour and 8 minutes after I left the office.  It took me 22 minutes to run to the metro at Twinbrook, then about 40 minutes on the bus, then about a 6 minute walk to my apartment from the bus stop (in the rain).  All in all, I thought it was a great way to get home and when I walked in the door, my workout was already done for the night.  I'm feeling pretty ballsy, so tomorrow I think for the first time in this endeavor, I'll break out the bike.  I'm eyeing a Sligo Creek Trail / RideOn Route 48 plan for getting to work, stay tuned...


  1. I feel your pain with regards to the weather. Not owning a vehicle can make your travels fantastic when the weather is nice, but when the weather is terrible, getting around is truly a nightmare. When you're car-less, you learn to keep a steady supply of umbrellas!

  2. Couldn't agree more Jeff. In fact, as it's been raining the past couple of days, I've made it a point to have an umbrella with me even on runs and bike rides, when the only other items I'm carrying are my phone and wallet.

  3. I definitely do not utilize a "man purse" or "satchel) to carry my belongings, but you can now see why they might be necessary! If you always need to be prepared to battle the elements, pockets aren't always enough.

  4. I've actually taken to an Adidas sling backpack for bike rides.

  5. PS Jeff I think you'd look very fashionable with a murse!