I'm going to give everyone A Break from Balance!
Lights and Safety
Super Bore, I stopped watching that football game early. Did the Buffalo Bills Win?
Laura and I went to the Duck Pond and .... Zip Line: Finally us kids are allowed to play in the playground! Safety Protocols are in Order! BYOHS.... Bring Your Own Hand Sanitizer!
So to segue into Today's story, I wanted to 'Shed Some Light' on a very important pet peeve of mine. Lights! I know, I know, he's ranting about lights again! But seriously, twice a year the sun's angle changes making dawn and dusk visibility a challenge. The story that follows was spurred on by a couple women, regular walkers on the Bay Trail. They had some pretty cool lights on them, and it gave me ample time to alert them to my oncoming 'Mega Bike', thereby avoiding a collision and also not scaring them to death! Or having them flinch and jump out of my way and into the marsh!
You would be surprised how many folks walk, jog and ride the marsh in dark clothing during challenging visibility conditions. As for motorists... I'd say 35% of people Do Not Know when they are suppose to legally have their lights on! Well for me, I ride with my bike lights on All The Time! So let me tell you about my light set up!
For the front end, I have this RUNACC Waterproof Intelligent Sensing Bicycle Headlight it's usb - C chargeable. The light has with 7 modes low light, strong light, dimming, slow and fast flashing and lastly the dreaded SOS mode. I especially like it because it's dimmable so I can set it to 'Not Blind' oncomers! I also use the my hybrid bike, but if that one ever peters out, I will certainly purchase another one of these.
I ride with Two Taillights for two reasons. Just in case one discharges while riding and of course to increase my own visibility on the road.
I can't pick a favorite because the are both quite good. The Freshday Smart Bike Bicycle Rear Light is great because it automatically turns on in the dark with movement. It also acts as a brake light and increases it's brightness when the motion detector feels the bike slowing down or braking! As of this moment, it's not available, but there are others very similar to chose from. Just click the link and it will give you viable options! My second light the Volcano Eye Rear Tail Light is just plain cool because my favorite setting looks like a cylon, cyborg or Kit the car from Knight Rider!
And not just for fun, but seriously practical, I have an underglow light set up below my cargo bay. It comes with a controller, but it's pretty weak and fragile. It also runs on batteries which I find a pain. I have a dedicated video scheduled for that one.
And lastly for fun....
My Oakland Zoo, Glowing Face Mask, complete with 12 settings. It's also USB chargeable and can be ordered from the Oakland Zoo Online store. It helps the Great Cause of the zoo's mission.
This past Friday, 2/5, I was taking my favorite route to work on the Bay Trail. A couple of gals - regulars - with some great personal lighting were on the trail ahead of me, just past the trail entrance. As I rang my bell and passed them, we all said good morning and Happy Friday. A couple hundred yards up the trail, I crossed the San Lorenzo Bridge and stopped on the far side, as I often do, to take some morning pictures of our beautiful Bay. And to drink some water. I took a few photos, then as I put my camera away and turned my cargo bike back around, these same two gals had caught up to me. Although it was still quite dark, I could see that they both had on their heads some very nice looking Tuques. I said, 'Oops, excuse me again' as I nearly cut them off (ran them over) as they stepped off of the bridge. Before I mounted and rode off they politely asked, "We see you ride by in the mornings and we were wondering, What Are You Doing With That Bike?" I had to laugh a bit and they elaborated, "and what kind of bike is that?" Answering out of order, I replied, "This is a Cargo Bike and I use it for my commute to work!" "oh really! how cool!", they responded and continued, "We jokingly speculate about what you might be doing and that maybe you are delivering newspapers!" I got a decent laugh out of that and went on to explain that a one point, I had thought of doing 'DoorDash' to help pay for my Babboe City: Special Edition! They thought that would have been a good idea until we discussed the logistics of bike travel and trying to get enough trips in to actually make it worth while in a suburban community.
They were kind enough to listen to my story about having reached 4000 miles on my cargo bike and also about how I used to commute on my Schwinn Hybrid, which has 1000+ miles on it. And before that my Specialized Rock Hopper that was stolen right out of my driveway at 6am no less! 6 years combined of various dedication levels of bicycle commuting! I explained to them the Cargo Bike advantage, being able to load all the things that make commuting more enjoyable instead of cramming so much stuff into my backpack, side packs, and bike rack on my Hybrid. I have my laptop briefcase, bike tools, full size bike pump, change of clothes, towel, back up battery, solar panels, tripod, cameral lights, microphones and the kitchen sink! Well, almost! I explained a bit about our weekend bike rides and the addition of chairs, coolers, board games, garbage grabber and garbage bags. And how several times I've come to the rescue of stranded bicyclists by utilizing my tool capacity to assist in getting them back on the trail! I talked briefly about our trips to focus on cleaning up the bay shore and of course our grocery trips to shop free of using up fossil fuels!
It was a nice couple of minutes touting the use of my cargo bike and how we came to purchase this unique bicycle.
A story for another day!