Although the Scientist will often drive in to lab and/ or Sunday depending on how busy he is, and sometimes I'll borrow his car to run errands that are either far away or involve heavy bulky objects, instead this weekend we tried to go everywhere by bicycle
First we biked to the new outpost of Flour bakery near MIT. This part of Mass Ave has been undergoing a bit of a renaissance, after years of feeling like a forlorn DMZ between the MIT campus and Central Square. Evidently MIT owns much of it, and hasn't done anything with it for whatever reason. The new Novartis compound helps, and there are a couple of new stores and restaurants, which start to make it feel like a real part of the city. We snagged seats in the window, and not only was the bike rack full, but bikes zipped by on a regular basis- I'd say 20 bikes went by while we enjoyed our french toast.
I then did a small tour of the bike stores of East Cambridge, looking for a dynamo tail light for Minerva. I hit Cambridge Bikes, where someone ignorant started to tell me I'd need a separate dynamo for the rear (A level look and a quick explanation that I'd done it on two other bikes earned me a guy who actually knew what he was talking about, but who didn't have any tail lights.
I stopped at the hardware store to get some paint, then hit up Hub Bicycles, which I'd never been in before. They couldn't help me with the tail light, but I browsed a bit, looking for something that I did need. I didn't see anything, but they were very friendly and I wish them well. They have a great location right on the bike lane down Cambridge. I bet they get a lot of neighborhood traffic needing mechanical help. Unlike most bike stores, they didn't appear to be selling any bikes, so they're making it on wrenching and accessories alone. One thing that I noticed that seemed like a great idea "bike pyjamas" a tyvek or similar cover for if you have to lock your bike on the street in inclement weather.
Finally, I swung past Broadway bikes, hoping that since they identify as a transportation cycling-oriented shop they would have something, but nope. They could special order it, but so could I, and partly I wanted to actually look at them and see how bright the different ones were, as I've heard some people (MDI) voice concerns that the standlights are pretty weak on the B&M rack mounted lights. My fender mounted light is at least 90% of its full brightness on standlight setting, so if the tail lights are significantly dimmer, I'll get a fender light.
I did see this pretty cool Swedish Kronan military bike. It has unusual geometry- it seemed really long for its height- as a comparison here's a photo of it next to Minerva, who is extra long.
At my last stop, at the Grocery store, I locked up next to a bike with this sticker: