Well, I can cross another one off the Bucket List today. I have been wanting to ride my longboard into work for a long time now, but kept talking myself out of it. I would tell myself that I needed to better plot my route, that my skills weren’t up to par. How would I handle curbs and obstacles? What if I wipe out and become the comedy act for the long line of rush hour drivers? What if I die of exhaustion, and they don’t find my body for weeks because I fell into a roadside gully? I’m going to look ridiculous!
I needed to come into work for a few hours today, on a very pleasant, warm, and sunny Sunday afternoon. I walked the first few blocks with my longboard in hand, trying to escape the busyness and all of the people, to ensure that there were as few witnesses as possible. You see, the sidewalks in Canton are sort of like a cross between pavers and stamped concrete. It is very bumpy, with lots of cracks, rocks, and mini potholes. It looked like certain doom.
After a few minutes of debating whether or not this was the stupidest idea I’d ever had, I finally hopped on my longboard. FREEDOM! Everything I was afraid of, every apprehension I had, vanished. My board glided along, bumpily, but steadily. The ride, from that point forward, was carefree, fun, and relaxing. My fear and self-doubt were the only obstacles I had to overcome, not some crazy road side hazards. I rode through Canton and Fells Point, which are both upscale, touristy, waterfront neighborhoods on the way to Downtown Baltimore. Once I got closer to Downtown, I shot over to the Harbor East Promenade and Pier 6. George Thorogood is playing the Pier 6 Pavilion tonight, and I got to hear some band warm-ups as I rode by. I rode through the Inner Harbor, past the National Aquarium, along Pratt Street, through the Pavilions, and stopped at McKeldin Square’s fountains. It is rumored that the fountains here will be torn down, as they are usually dried up and underappreciated during the summer. Today the fountains were full of waterfalls and splashing water, and I think that it was the first time that I really appreciated the fountains and artwork there myself. I rode a little further and reached my office.
I am so glad I finally got the courage to ride in. It was such an enjoyable ride, and has made a Sunday in the office that much better. I look forward to doing it again, however, have learned some lessons on this first endeavor. Check out my blog post on prepping yourself for your first commuter outing. I hope that it helps anyone else considering riding into work, whether it be by bicycle, skateboard, or other means.