Friday, July 18, 2008

Riding through Central Park

I don't normally arrive at a race early enough to ride any of the course, but it was different this time. I'm in New York today (3 days before the New York City Triathlon) with nothing that I have to do so I put my bike together early and went out to ride the run course in Central Park. My sister warned me that there is a specific direction that you're supposed to the run/bike/rollerblade around the Park and unfortunately it's in the opposite direction to our race day course. Nonetheless, I heeded her advice and proceeded counter-clockwise around the Park. I was expecting a nice easy ride through the park, but within seconds I realized that there would be nothing relaxing about my ride today. I was dodging bikes, runners, baby strollers, and rollerbladers that were all coming at me not to mention cars, which, according to one sign, weren't allowed in the park today anyway. But after 3 taxis passed me, it was obvious that the sign either didn't apply or the drivers didn't care. The most interesting object in my path that forced me to swerve quickly off course was a cute little turtle crossing the street. Another rider dodged on my left and we both looked back as we passed the brave (or stupid) little turtle who was slowly making his way across the pavement. He reminded me of the true nature of Central Park and the little oasis it represents in the middle of New York City; a small refuge of protection for many little animals. For the remainder of my ride I paid more attention to the nature on either side of the road and noticed everything else a little less. Nearly missed the ramp back to 72nd street too.

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