Friday, February 3, 2012

How to cope when living in a snow-less ski community? Bike!

Winter bike-wear: Majesty peacoat, Cambridge turtleneck, and faux pearls, all from JCrew.
One the of the things that really gripes me about this winter is the fact that we haven't had a good snow storm in over a month!  What is the point of cold if you can't ski?  Last February I went skiing a couple of times a week for heaven's sake.

My second and last ski adventure this season was on December 15, my birthday!  Heavy sigh.
I wouldn't be so bugged if I saw a single sign of spring.  Yes, in Louisville, Kentucky it is cold, grey and damp right now but at least I could go outside and see the daffadils pushing their way up through the soil, along with tops of tuplips!  Here, there is no hope!  Only bitterness that I can't go cross country skiing and the knowledge that spring won't get here until sometime mid-June!

Merrona print skirt and tights from Target.  The skirt is fully lined and all the seams are perfectly finished.  Only $14 on sale!
Oh, well.  At least, I can enjoy pedaling to work in dressier winter clothes as per my New Years resolution to recommit to cycle chic-dom!  And to be sure, the streets and roads have been free of ice and snow, and the bike lanes and multiuse paths are clear and easy to traverse on my bike.

Thrifted Express low-rise, side zip, boot cut slacks.  Purchased 10 years ago and still look great.  They're in a thick, stretchy knit that are really warm and always seem to fit perfectly five pounds in either direction.
Yes, we did have a dusting of snow yesterday but it's mostly melted at this point.  The only thing that prevented me from getting my bike out today and pedaling to work was that our very steep, snow-covered driveway was far too slick to travel down without killing myself in the process, or at least sustaining a very serious head injury.

Bike and Pedestrian Update

Here's the text from the email I received from Congressman Paul Gosar's office.  Apparently, I was wrong; he is not a member of the House Transportation Committee.  He seems to be sitting on the fence, perhaps conveniently so as Flagstaff is home to a lot of transportation cyclist and more liberal than most of Arizona. Mr. Gosar, however, more of the political persuasion that views funding of things like bike paths as threat to our "freedom and liberty".  Anyway, here's the communication.  I changed the font to distinquish it from my words.

Dear Ms. Voyer-Caravona,
Thank you for contacting me with regard to various programs dealing with biking and walking paths in the "Surface Transportation Reauthorization Bill of 2011." I appreciate your concern.
As a lifelong outdoorsman, I appreciate how important it is to have outdoor recreation and transportation. I have always enjoyed walking and biking paths and appreciate how important they are, not only for recreation, but for commuting as well. When people are able to walk or ride their bikes to work, it decreases pollution, helps to lower energy prices, and increases their quality of life through better exercise. I certainly support these kinds of opportunities being available when they are economically viable and technically feasible. Also, particularly as a father of 3 children, I am well aware of how important having safe pedestrian pathways, sidewalks, and crosswalks are to both good transportation systems and for peace of mind. I have thought about these things ever since my children were old enough to go on walks around Flagstaff by themselves.
While I am not a member of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, I have been monitoring this bill closely as it makes its way through Congress. On July 7, 2011, the committee revealed its 6-year plan to reauthorize and streamline various transportation projects. This is particularly important, because current programs are being authorized through a temporary extension measure which will run out at the end of the fiscal year.
Chairman of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee John Mica (R-FL) decided to go a new route in funding certain transportation initiatives, providing block grants to individual State Departments of Transportation as opposed to directly funding certain projects. I am still studying the effects of this funding mechanism and its effects on various transportation programs, including its effects on biking paths, walking paths, sidewalks, crosswalks, and the like. It is likely that the bill will be changed by going through the committee process, and I intend on keeping a close eye on what the bill ultimately contains before deciding how to vote. I will certainly keep your thoughts in mind as I decide how to vote on this important piece of legislation.
For additional information, please visit my website, http://www.gosar.house.gov . From this site you can access statements about current events or pending legislation, and receive detailed information about the many services that I am privileged to provide for Arizonans. Please also feel free to contact my congressional office at (202) 225-2315.
Again, I appreciate your thoughts and concerns. It is an honor to serve as your United States Congressman. Your suggestions are always welcome, and if ever I may be of assistance, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Sincerely,

Paul A. Gosar, D.D.S.
Member of Congress


I'll keep expressing my opinion and cross my finger that something sinks in.  As I wrote a few days ago, our combined efforts can make a difference.  I put in my two cents yesterday regarding Komen's bizarro decision to withhold grant funding from Planned Parenthood.  It seems my small voice and tiny donation to Planned Parenthood, along with the voices of thousands more, spoke pretty loud.  As of today, Komen reversed their decision.   Could impassioned citizens from every cross section of the American cycling world make a similar difference?  I don't know?  Could it be, we are entering an age of renewed activism?  

4 comments:

Rachel Wells said...

We've had no winter at all here in Southern California, but it's sunny and warm and the jasmine is blooming, so I can't be too upset.

Maybe you'll get a surprise snow storm like Denver!

She Rides a Bike said...

We got a slight sprinkling of the Denver storm - about 7 much needed inches at the skiing area and maybe an inch around our house. I'll be back on my bike on Monday for sure.

BluesCat said...

Kudos on getting someone in Gosar's office to respond to you, Karen!

I've yet to hear from anybody in Jerry Weier's office about AZ HB2211 - the stop as yield bill.

She Rides a Bike said...

Blues, I like stop as yield bill though I can understand on another level why some might oppose. Overall, I think it makes thinks between bikes and cars more efficient.