24 March 2012

On A Clear Road You Can Ride Forever?

Even the most jaded of us are marveling at the weather we've been having.  Yesterday and the day before, the temperature reached 75F (24C), which is more typical of what we have in June.  And not so much as a wisp of cloud smudged the blue skies.  Such clouds gathered over the course of this day; the air grew cooler and the wind blew harder.  Still, it was a fine day to ride.

These few days have followed one of the mildest winters most of us can recall. Strangely, the only significant snow fell at the end of October; since then, we've had a couple of bouts of flurries but no accumulations.  In spite of this lack of snow, the season has not seemed unusually dry, though I can't recall any long stretches of rain.

This weather, needless to say, has been a boon to those of us who ride bicycles.  However, it has brought another benefit that I noticed as I rode today.

I can't recall seeing the streets so clear at this time of the year.  Last year, in the aftermath of the seemingly endless procession of snowstorms we had, the streets were full of sand and salt.  The weather, and the sand and salt, meant that there were even more potholes and other breaks in the pavement than one would normally find.

What made things worse was that there were also other kinds of debris:  everything from broken bottles to car parts.  The snowstorms hindered, or even precluded, trash pickup.  So, refuse left at curbside took flight when the wind gusted, or simply got pushed or brushed aside from passing cars and pedestrians.  

This year, I've noticed that the only streets that have a lot of problems with potholes and other instructions are the ones that carry a lot of truck traffic.  In most of the residential areas, like my neighborhood, the streets seem fairly smooth.

Hmm...I wonder if I should be saying all of these things.  If City officials are reading this, they might think they can cut the street cleaning and maintenance budget.  And, although I know, rationally, that I have no influence on the weather, something in the back of my mind tells me that I'm going to "jinx" us for next winter.

What can I say?  I'm glad for what we've had and wouldn't mind more of it.

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