Bicyclist of the Month
March Bicyclist of the month Linda Zolten Wood, Collinwood resident
Where and how do you ride? Describe the experience.
I usually ride as a fun way to exercise, and was gifted a thrifted sturdy bike with big, city street friendly tires about 5 years ago, and have been addicted ever since.
I love early morning rides before my family is up, ready for breaking dawn, and ride around my blocks in North Collinwood, with my light flashing. Traffic is very quiet early in the morning, and I feel safer off the main roads.
If I have to be on Lakeshore Blvd, I resist riding in the street because inattentive drivers are not paying attention to bicycles, and the new bike lanes are not marked clearly enough; they’re also unprotected, and potholed or filled with broken glass. I’ve been shoved off the road by RTA’s Paratransit bus, who was not aware that I had a right to be on the road. So until the bike lanes and sharrows are more safe, I’ll mostly stick with the sidewalks, apologies to the bus stop folks – I ring my bell and slow down for them.
Do you ride your bike to work or school?
My husband and I decided to become a one-car family and we’re both self-employed artists, so if he needs to be at a gig, I’ve been able to ride to local jobs and the Collinwood Rec. Center for classes, as long as it’s above 45º or so.
Do you ride year round? How do you dress for the cold?
Cold weather riding is a bummer, so I avoid it, but I can handle bundled up short rides if needed, as long as I’m layered, my head & ears need to be covered under my helmet (I’m always helmeted) and gloves are needed.
If you could change or improve one thing about your cycling experience, what would it be?
If I had my wish, my street would still link up with the lake bike trail starting behind the Walgreens at E156th at Lakeshore. It used to take us down to the new bridge connecting Villa with Euclid Beach, but now the path is gated and locked – disappointing that it’s not as easy as it used be, to connect the lakefront.
Share with us a favorite memory.
My favorite memory was an early ride, a couple years ago, when the sun wasn’t quite up yet, but a hint of dawn revealed very large, slow moving dogs, quietly crossing the street: I was moving pretty slowly and peacefully, when I realized there were 4 full-grown deer crossing in front of me. I slowed down, 1/4 block from them, and stopped in the middle of the street and just watched them gracefully move. I love seeing wildlife in the city.
To be considered for Bicyclist of the Month, contact us at bikeEuclid@gmail.com.