by Barbara Dexter
Well there I was an evening off in an unfamiliar area. My work was done for the day and it was time for some fun. Luckily I planned a well deserved evening beak. I researched the local bicycle and hiking trails online. Well of course I had to ask the opinion of the local unnamed exercise enthusiasts as well. I found myself heading to the Mount Vernon Trail. It was an adventure just getting to the trail. To quote Mainer’s frequent saying, “you can’t get there from here.” Which I interpret to mean it is going to take forever and a day to get there. Well I had enough time, barely. I tried searching the on board GPS in my vehicle by the name, then by an address, and then by recreation or sport type. I had no success in narrowing down the exceedingly long list of options. I gave up using the GPS. I moved on to the google maps app I have on my cell phone. It found the trail, but in Alexandria, VA. I was hoping to start at the Mount Vernon Estate. But no worries, since I found the trail. After a 40 to 45 minutes drive in rush hour traffic, I manged to see the trail and then had to find a parking space. I pulled in a spot located on the street in the center of town and I’m off. One geeky fat chick in a helmet, on a yellow mountain bike, with the “old lady seat” heading down the main drag toward the trail. What a site to behold, I was-not. The first thing I noticed is that I was afraid of getting run over by one of the expensive cars that were zooming past me. The next thing I noticed was I was on the wrong side of the road. I needed to cross the busy street to be able to ride the trail. Well okay then, I will walk this thing across the street in the cross walk. Well I’m waiting for the walk signal that never occurs and looking a little out of place. I finally decide turns green again. I made it across and I’m riding on the trail, finally. I figured I had about one and a half to two hours before dark. I head in the general direction of the Mount Vernon Estate, thinking it cannot be too far down. I am at the speed of me. Which by the way is not the speed of light. I find it is much better to observe one’s surroundings at a more natural pace. I really appreciated this when a well muscled man in spandex or lycra biking clothes zoomed past me. Some how I didn’t really care about making it all the way to the Mount Vernon Estate. I was seeing the sites as I trudged along. I stopped noticing the distance signs along the tail.