I really like to think of myself as environmentally conscious. I mean, I grew up in the generation that had drilled into their heads, "Never let the water run" and "reduce, reuse, recycle". In elementary school, I made my mom change all the light bulbs in my room to the compact florescent ones. Although since getting a car with the advent of high school, I experienced the liberating experience of a driver's license and I realized that all of middle school ridding a bike was horribly slow.
Since moving to Utah that experience has almost revered. Instead of living in the sprawling south, I now live in a compact valley system. And what comes with living in a denser area is the awful smog. Every winter and many summer days, the air is hazy and smokey and it makes you cough like crazy. So I guess my motivation to start using public transit has come from both my dislike of the over congested high way system and my own personal desire to have cleaner air for when I live here for the next 4 years.
Over the past two years, I've become very comfortable with using public transit in Utah. The UTA system is simple, efficient and pretty reliable. It's also incredibly bike friendly, and today I decided that I would venture in a new form of transit, using my bike to get around downtown.
My destination for today? The Salt Lake City Library
I wish I could explain how much I love this building. If you want to get a better idea of what it looks like, here are some pictures. It's easily my favorite place in the city. It's 6 floors of glass and books, and I love it. They have an amazing architecture section that I love to use for inspiration and ideas. I love to spend as much time as possible on the 4th floor sitting in my favorite section overlooking the city. And on my lap, pure beauty.
Basically I wish I could be an architect in New York City around the year 1900. But I guess I'll settle for the 2020's. Anyway, getting back to the whole me trying to be a bicycling hipster mormon boy....
My summer bucket list is essential to do quintessential Utahn things. After living here two years, I realized that there are a ton of things that Utah is famous for that I've never really gotten to explore. This summer, I've already crossed off going to the observation deck of The Church Office Building, visit the Hogle Zoo and go to Park City for a day. Apparently Salt Lake City is an up and coming bike mecca, and after ridding my bike around the city today, I can totally confirm that.
Salt Lake City has recently installed a city wide bike share system, with stations throughout the central business district and surrounding areas. They also hosted some fancy-shmancy conference for urban hipsters. And best of all, pretty much all UTA vehicles are bike friendly. So when I wanted to get my bike to down today, I put it in my car and took it to the Frontrunner station (Utah's commuter rail) and parked it in the designated bike car.
Then after getting off the train, I simply walk across a small plaza onto the light rail Trax line. I boarded the Blue line train which runs from Salt Lake Central Station to Sandy and Draper via downtown. Once I reached the Courthouse Station, I took my bike off the train and rode two blocks over to the library. The red line train actually gets you closer, but I didn't feel like transferring trains for that short of a distance.
|Look! A map of the train system!|
Anyway, I made it to the library all safe and sound, and I enjoyed the company of several great books for a few hours. On my way back, I managed to ride the trax two stations when the train in front of us had a mechanical failure, and we were going to be delayed. Instead of waiting, I just took my bike off and rode through the city to the train station. And then I had a nice relaxing journey back to my car and then onto home.
Ironically enough, the most stressful part of my little trip today wasn't the fact that I rode on both State Street and 400 South, the two busiest roads in downtown. It was trying to get my dang bicycle to fit in my tiny car. That more than anything was the most stressful part.
Anyway, I love you guys. Each of you are very beautiful, handsome and attractive.
Have an adventure!