Half of my commuting trips involve a MUP of some sort, and I have been noticing a theme of sorts with the people I encounter on the path. It is a wide, paved network of trails that run along Interstate 25 (North-South) and to Garden of the Gods to the West, but not so close you see or hear traffic. There are runners, dog walkers, baby strollers and a large warren of rabbits, who have caused me much grief over the years.
Rabbits aside, the theme of the MUP seems to be something like Pleasantville when compared to commuting on the road. The road is the busy bustle of people trying to get to work on time, reading the paper, texting, shaving, applying makeup in their cars, while the MUP is like Mayberry – everyone says hello, is polite, thanks me for warning of my approach (on your left), and this is encouraging. It’s like I go back in time on these trips, wishing that life outside of the path could be this simple and pleasant.
There’s dog walker guy, whose dalmation mix sits when I approach, then gets up and continues his morning walk when I pass. Dog walker couple always says ‘morning’ and comments on the jersey du jour, and then there’s hot mom (she occasionally has a jogger-stroller, and if she’s not a mom, she’ll be known as hot aunt) who just smiles at me as I ride by. About half the folks are plugged in to music of some sort, so they never hear my approach, but they never hog the median and wave back as I wave to pass.
I don’t mind taking the road, and actually prefer it, however there are just some days when work has been a real grind or I don’t want to deal with traffic (Fridays). These are MUP days, and I like the vibe. If I listen very carefully, I can almost hear Andy Griffith whistling that certain tune.
I am awaiting my helmet cam in the mail, and will post some commutes as soon as I can. Anybody who has experience in getting this from camera to internet and adding music, your advice and input are welcomed, and am curious what you all see on your rides/commutes. What are your preferred routes and why? Did you have one too many slices of pizza the previous night so the long or hilly route follows to burn some extra calories, or are you in a hurry to get where you are going so you take the shortest route?