Sunday, November 16, 2008

Spinning around San Antonio

We just got back from cheering for our friends who were running in the San Antonio marathon and half marathon. Of course we had to get up before the crack of dawn to load our bikes and make the hour and a half drive down to San Antone. There were over 30,000 runners and of course thousands of spectators. The bikes came in handy allowing us to cheer for our friends at various points along the course. Most of the streets were closed off to cars so we had a great time riding carefree down the streets, listening to bands that were set up along the course and just hanging out on the sidelines. It's the only way to do a marathon (for us nonrunners). In addition to supporting our friends, we got in some great exercise instead of living vicariously through their efforts and enjoy the city. It was a really awesome day.

However, it was a little tricky midday when the race was over and thousands of tourists, cars, and buses descended upon the downtown Riverwalk area and we pedaled our way back to Trinity University where we had parked our car. All the one way streets, narrow lanes, and right turn only lanes (didn't know they were right turn only - no signs before the intersection) forced us into many precarious situations. I broke the golden rule forbidding riding the wrong way on a one-way street and occasionally on the sidewalk. But I will always put my safety first over the rules. I really thought there wasn't a choice given the absence of a shoulder, the tight lanes and traffic. We even got off our bikes and walked our bikes on the sidewalk when there was more pedestrians. It was also frustrating to be spinning along the local area colleges (N. St Marys/Josephine among others) in a dedicated bike lane and to have it suddenly end without notice and on high traffic roads. Just goes to show that there was a lot of poor planning. What is the purpose of having these lanes in certain areas but not others?