Today I decided I needed some stress-relief, so I should take advantage of being unemployed and get some exercise. First I went skating (which was quite hurty on my knee (bleh)). Then I drove to Freedom Hill Park, because I'd read there was a bike path there that connected to Metro Beach Park. There was indeed, a paved path that more-or-less followed Big Beaver all the way to Lake St Clair. It was about 10 miles one way (more if you accidentally turn right instead of left after going under I94).
It was a perfectly stunning fall day. It was sunny, with a bit of crisp wind, and 70 degrees. As I rode there the miles just disappeared under my tires, and I was awestruck at what a splendid day it was. It's interesting because I've driven that stretch before. Riding my bike, I noticed so much more -- little streams the road went over, trees, and such. Driving, I might notice buildings but that's all.
After adding a few extra miles by a wrong turn (that was actually very pretty along a river, so I think I'll make that wrong turn next time too), I found the right path and ended up at Metro Beach Park. It, like the path, was almost empty. There were an elderly couple here and there, and a tiny number of younger people like me. Several times I thought to myself, "Why aren't people out here, on such a beautiful day?" Then I remembered that it's a thursday, and most people had jobs to be at. It's so foreign to me, to be out when most people are working, that I went through that same surprised thought process several times today.
The park's view of the lake was just beautiful. The water shimmered in the sunshine, and it was all kinds of nice. I hung out there for awhile, then headed back. Heading back, I discovered why the ride there had been so effortless.... I rode into a strong headwind, all 10 miles of the ride. Yuck! It was pretty vicious, and I didn't pay much attention to the scenery anymore, just keeping my head down and pedaling.
I did enjoy seeing a woman on the path in front of me, walking an actual SWARM of chihuahuas. She had to have at least eight maybe ten of the little critters, holding so many leashes in one hand it looked like a spider web. They were all well-behaved, trotting forward together in a cluster even with a bicycle passing by them.
I went just over 25 miles total, which is good practice since I'm going to attempt a century on saturday. Just four times that.... can't be TOOOOO hard, right?? We'll find out I guess.
It was a lovely afternoon, and a nice break from job-stresses. I could get used to this, if only I didn't need those darn paychecks!