Today was our first day on East Marginal Way since the Lance David Memorial Ride exactly three months ago. I didn’t know this during today’s rides back and forth to Alki, but this morning there was another collision–bike on bike–here. What I did notice was the new green bike lane leading up to the corner with the ghost bike. It’s hard to miss the heavy tread marks of all the truck traffic screeching through it.
Since we travel this street during weekends or non-commute weekday hours, we don’t share the space with trucks, but I can imagine what it’s like during commute time and I felt it was important to attend the memorial ride, organized by my friend Don of West Seattle Bike Connections. Here’s a quick recap of the May ride…
There were several fast-paced memorial rides and while I would classify this one as faster than my usual “easy (under 10mph)” it was just about slow enough for my heavy rig and kid-friendly. Now kid-friendly isn’t the same as kid-oriented–like a Kidical Mass ride–so we skipped the pre-ride gathering and speeches to get wiggles out at the adjacent beach. A bit of run-around time can make all the difference.
And I was able to do a bit of socializing during the long ride over–riding under 10mph makes it easy for friends to catch up and pay a greeting :) I met Brooks, one of my costars from the Cascade Bicycle Club: Three stories from the road video. He was heading home to Burien.
Next Don of West Seattle Bike Connections caught up and rode with me for a bit–we’re right across the street from the ghost bike here. Note the oncoming bike on the sidewalk rather than the other side of the street.
And Dongho Chang, recently declared maybe “the coolest traffic engineer in the world”.
So things are changing on Seattle streets, but not fast enough to protect everyone. Just two days ago, people gathered in Rainier Valley for a community walk and vigil. Meanwhile, the kids and I were in Portland, experiencing a truly bikeable American city. But now back in the real world, we carry on, encouraging more people to join us on bikes on Seattle streets and influencing what change we can in our little way.