Have you ever done something--and then a few seconds later realize what a massive mistake that was? That's the position I'm in today--after having taken my bicycle to work this morning. As soon as I got to the 9th Avenue overpass I realized that there is absolutely no way for me to get back home this afternoon.
I could lie and say I took the bike today in honor of Earth Week (Earth Day wasn't enough--we had to make it a whole week?)--doing my part to limit greenhouse gasses (since the volcano in Iceland won't cooperate with international efforts to "control" the environment). But in reality, my Jeep is in the shop today to fix a coolant leak and my wife hates getting up this early to drive me to work so I had few other options.
Anyway, if you thought Oshkosh was biker-unfriendly before, this summer you will think that the city has a death wish against pedal pushers. How many drivers do you think will be patient enough to let me into the left turn lane at the 9th and Washburn intersection this afternoon? Or will give me space in their lane going over the overpass? Or won't just run me down trying to make a right hand turn onto Koeller--while I need to go straight?
I could head north on Washburn to 21 and get across 41 over there--but that would require traveling through the construction zone on the frontage road with two narrow lanes and big heavy trucks heading in both directions. And then having to navigate the madness that is the 21-41 interchange with little room to maneuver again.
So now I am stuck--a prisoner of the insane traffic patterns created by all of the road work in Oshkosh this spring. May as well just have someone drop off a sleeping bag and nap in my office until things calm down around 7:00 tonight. Or maybe, I could just throw my bike over the fence along Highway 41--scoot across the four lanes of traffic and the median--then toss the bike back over the fence along Koeller and ride through the parking lots to Witzel--thereby avoiding all of the construction zones. In this case the safest route might be a straight line.