Measure Twice, Cut Once

Measure Twice, Cut Once
(…. some (retrospective) humor from a bicycling-commuter’s perspective….)

Had a somewhat amusing lesson today…..

On 9/4/2014 5:51 PM, Communications wrote:
Subj: Update on Lawrence Road Closure…

Lawrence Road under the Centennial Bridge will remain closed while further evaluations of the structure are completed.

Strawberry Gate will remain open until midnight tonight to accommodate those who need access into this evening, and will reopen at 5:30am on Friday.

….. which (i thought) would indicate that this morning i could have come through via bicycle, rather than being instructed upon reaching Strawberry Gate to continue further uphill to Grizzly Gate

oops!  of all the days to decide i’d do my “full” bike commute (from Albany to Berkeley, up through Campus to Gayley, Rim Road, Centennial to Strawberry Gate, then rollers back across LBNL to my office in the northern part)!  apparently, i sort of only “half-read” (or “half-understood”) last night’s message so thought i’d be able to do that full commute.

Alas, it was not to be!  First i had the detour from Gayley/Rim road over to dicey Channing Circle and up the back side of Memorial Stadium to get to Centennial… and then the “Road Closed” signs upon reaching Strawberry Gate……normally i enjoy the steeps and rollers that come from Strawberry Gate across LBNL to my building (56A)… but going Centennial further uphill to Grizzly Gate?????  Yikes!   I’ve done it enough times in the past to know that section is even harder than the part before Strawberry Gate, and today – feeling a bit old, fat, out of shape these days – just reaching Strawberry Gate I was almost at my limit, so ready for my rollers across LBNL;

I’ll note it’s also a dangerous left turn into the Grizzly Gate, with downhill traffic coming from a somewhat blind curve (from uphill) and also car traffic coming from behind (from downhill). (typically, if i’m going in Grizzly Gate, i’ll have gone up Spruce/Grizzly Peak down Centennial, and then r/h turn into Grizzly Gate)

Normally, although any uphill on Centennial is ridiculously HARD, in my normal fitness level I would have just gritted my teeth and continued up Centennial….but these days i’m working my way back up to prime fitness from a few years of injury/laziness…. (ach!). Fortunately, one of the LBNL shuttle bus drivers who was going in the van up through Grizzly Gate offered to give me a lift. (Thanks, Dianna!)
Finally, although I appreciate the reasons behind closing Lawrence Road due to safety reasons (*retaining wall cracked/unstable), I was at first unclear why my offer to WALK my bike up Lawrence road along the south side until past the retaining wall (if the problem is on the north side of the road); it is also true that if the retaining wall crumbles and causes the bridge/overpass (i.e., “Centennial Drive”) to collapse, then sending traffic out on Centennial (up to Grizzly Gate) also means that same traffic is traveling directly on top of the unstable area.  Just some food for thought.

Anyway, I guess I’m appreciative that LBNL Faciliites is thinking on the conservative side for safety. I’d hate to think of the worst-case scenario if the whole deal suddenly went south and there were no precautions to prevent people from going through there…. and i suppose the info put out “Lawrence Road under the Centennial Bridge will remain closed while further evaluations of the structure are completed” should have given me all the information I needed… Strawberry Gate open but Lawrence Road still closed….guess i just didn’t put two and two together…. “Coach” (my hubby) keeps telling me i’m supposed to start doing the longer Spruce/Grizzly/Centennial-Grizzly Gate commute option for my training, anyway…. (slightly longer and with many “sprint interval” options). and once i do that a few times, i’ll be in shape to go the other way and brave the climb up Centennial past Strawberry to Grizzly Gate (-:

That’s the theory, anyway…

Ride far, have fun!

Sherie

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