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Riding in a Pandemic

Old 03-21-20, 03:55 PM
  #276  
sjanzeir
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Saudi Arabia and Jordan

We're on partial lockdown over here in Saudi Arabia, but still not on a full-on curfew. Along with the entire education system, the government has shut down all nonessential businesses; only neighborhoodand grocery shops, central stores, gas stations and pharmacies are allowed to stay open. No gatherings of any kind - public or private - are allowed for any reason; weddings and all kinds of social functions all got canceled or shut down by the police. Corporations were told to keep only a skeleton workforce on a rotating basis and give all nonessential a mandatory leave. All domestic flights except cargo have been grounded. All entry points have been closed; no one gets into or out of the country - except citizens wanting to come home, who are immediately placed into mandatory 14-day quarantine.

That said, I can - and do - still ride every day, which is great, given that I don't have to - nor can - travel to Riyadh for work for at least a couple of weeks. Just before I wrote this, I made multiple trips to get groceries and supplies from the nearby stores. I also take an hour-long ride just after sunrise every morning (the weather is still pleasantly cool in the morning this time of year.) The police and I cross paths on a regular basis and none so far have pulled me over or told me to head straight back home. No group rides, though.

It's a different story for my family in Jordan, though. The army has taken over policing the whole country; anyone caught outside is thrown into the slammer for a year, martial law-style, and without a trial or the possibility of bail. All public transportation has been locked down, all businesses - including essential ones - have been forced to close, and the entire government is shut down for at least two weeks from Saturday. Inter-city travel has been banned. Problem is, my elderly mother is all alone at her home in one town; my two brothers and one of my sisters are with my stepmother in another town; my other sister is stuck with her husband in Egypt, and none of us can get to my mom! I check on her by phone at least twice a day; she says she's got everything she needs, with plenty of help from the neighbors.

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Old 03-21-20, 04:21 PM
  #277  
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"ANN ARBOR, Mich. – The Ann Arbor Distilling Co. has been turning its spirits into hand sanitizer for the Ann Arbor area community during a time of sanitizer shortages.

Using a base grain spirit that would typically be used for seasonal gins, A2DC has been mixing up batches of sanitizer by combining the spirit with aloe juice. "
My wife and I carry one in our pocket. We'll be glad when they redirect all their production to beverages.
They do this for free actually, if you bring in your empty.
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Old 03-21-20, 05:07 PM
  #278  
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Still no city wide lockdown here. But dining rooms in restaurants and anything dealing with public entertainment has been closed for nearly a week.

Yesterday was rainy, and it's raining now which is doing a great job washing the pollen away. Since it wasn't raining this morning I took a ride down streets and a MUP. I stopped into a Walgreens and picked up some cold meds and a few cans of chicken noodle soup to stock up for the next person who gets sick in my house. No crowds at that Walgreens. I only ran across two joggers on the MUP, which is light for a Saturday morning.
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Old 03-21-20, 05:10 PM
  #279  
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I got out today for 15 miles, in the hills just north of home. I was amazed to see probably 30-40 riders out, mostly solo, but a serious looking group of 6 or 8 hammering along (pushing the 6' rule), several families, and some people who looked like they forgot how to ride a bike but were out there anyway. Lots of walkers, dog walkers, and dogs walking their people. This is just north of LA, and the car traffic was down considerably. I usually do a club ride with from 10 to 20 riders depending on who shows up, but today, most of us did our own thing. After what seems like two weeks of rain, pandemic gloom and doom, it was great to get out in the fresh air and ride again. Yesterday, I was out for 13 miles and saw only one other rider, and fewer walkers, but it was a lot more chilly, and those who have jobs were either there or at home, working. One cool thing, I was on my old Super Course, suited up in my usual riding kit, and got an enthusiastic wave from a guy in a flannel shirt on some kind of mtn bike. All the riders I saw waved, even most of the walkers, which is not always the case. Cabin fever, bad as it is, sure beats the real kind. Strange, that it took a pandemic tragedy, and a "STAY HOME" order from our governor to get people outside and moving on a nice Saturday. Strange times. Stay healthy, ride your bike!

The wildflowers are starting to pop around here. Here's a few pics.




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Old 03-21-20, 05:41 PM
  #280  
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Originally Posted by Slightspeed View Post
I got out today for 15 miles, in the hills just north of home. I was amazed to see probably 30-40 riders out, mostly solo, but a serious looking group of 6 or 8 hammering along (pushing the 6' rule), several families, and some people who looked like they forgot how to ride a bike but were out there anyway. Lots of walkers, dog walkers, and dogs walking their people. This is just north of LA, and the car traffic was down considerably. I usually do a club ride with from 10 to 20 riders depending on who shows up, but today, most of us did our own thing. After what seems like two weeks of rain, pandemic gloom and doom, it was great to get out in the fresh air and ride again. Yesterday, I was out for 13 miles and saw only one other rider, and fewer walkers, but it was a lot more chilly, and those who have jobs were either there or at home, working. One cool thing, I was on my old Super Course, suited up in my usual riding kit, and got an enthusiastic wave from a guy in a flannel shirt on some kind of mtn bike. All the riders I saw waved, even most of the walkers, which is not always the case. Cabin fever, bad as it is, sure beats the real kind. Strange, that it took a pandemic tragedy, and a "STAY HOME" order from our governor to get people outside and moving on a nice Saturday. Strange times. Stay healthy, ride your bike!

The wildflowers are starting to pop around here. Here's a few pics.
I'm one of those plain clothes riders that wave at nearly everybody. Probably a habit from my motorcycle days, but it sure feels good waving to other humans in a friendly manner. Which is the complete opposite of what happens driving cars in traffic. I hate driving in traffic so much that society and myself would be better off if I were a hermit.
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Old 03-21-20, 06:03 PM
  #281  
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Originally Posted by FiftySix View Post
I'm one of those plain clothes riders that wave at nearly everybody. Probably a habit from my motorcycle days, but it sure feels good waving to other humans in a friendly manner. Which is the complete opposite of what happens driving cars in traffic. I hate driving in traffic so much that society and myself would be better off if I were a hermit.
I don't usually wave, but today I hopped on my road bike for a quick trip to the convenience store. Blue jeans, rain jacket, no helmet. Hardly any traffic, pandemic and all, but this roadie coming the other direction kept looking, looking, until I finally waved at him (un-initiate right-handed wave ) and that seemed to satisfy him! He waved back, I guess that's what he was looking for
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Old 03-21-20, 06:17 PM
  #282  
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
How about just staying 6.5 feet behind them? Sorry, but this just seems to be shading into neurotic. Not saying you are, this stuff is a bit nerve-wracking for most everyone, myself included.
The peanut gallery (who called it "bizarre" among other things when I brought it up) posted a sign from an Arlington park telling people to maintain their social distances of 6 feet. Outside, In the park. Maybe Arlington is shading into neurotic also, but I think it's just logical common sense.
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Old 03-21-20, 07:40 PM
  #283  
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Originally Posted by wphamilton View Post
The peanut gallery (who called it "bizarre" among other things when I brought it up) posted a sign from an Arlington park telling people to maintain their social distances of 6 feet. Outside, In the park. Maybe Arlington is shading into neurotic also, but I think it's just logical common sense.
Bizarre you're quoting me for saying that your assertion that you couldn't maintain 6 feet behind was bizarre, then.

I still don't think transient passes slightly closer than 6 feet while in transit outdoors is a serious concern.

I had to go to the supermarket today. There's an indoor environment where maintaining 6 feet is absolutely impossible.

Sorry, but you're just as peanutty as anyone here.
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Old 03-21-20, 07:43 PM
  #284  
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Originally Posted by wphamilton View Post
I don't usually wave, but today I hopped on my road bike for a quick trip to the convenience store. Blue jeans, rain jacket, no helmet. Hardly any traffic, pandemic and all, but this roadie coming the other direction kept looking, looking, until I finally waved at him (un-initiate right-handed wave ) and that seemed to satisfy him! He waved back, I guess that's what he was looking for

You're suggesting MUPs are dangerous for exposure but going to convenience stores?! Talk about bizzare.
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Old 03-22-20, 08:21 AM
  #285  
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
You're suggesting MUPs are dangerous for exposure but going to convenience stores?! Talk about bizzare.
I never said that mups were dangerous for exposure. I did say practice the same precautions as indoors. Your continued denigrating of that advice, when now it's become mainstream, is what's bizarre
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Old 03-22-20, 08:30 AM
  #286  
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
Bizarre you're quoting me for saying that your assertion that you couldn't maintain 6 feet behind was bizarre, then.

I still don't think transient passes slightly closer than 6 feet while in transit outdoors is a serious concern.

I had to go to the supermarket today. There's an indoor environment where maintaining 6 feet is absolutely impossible.

Sorry, but you're just as peanutty as anyone here.
So separation indoors is also not reasonable to you. Why are you even asking for virologists to chime in when you won't accept their recommendations?

You're really derailed your own thread here. I won't be responding to further snark from you or the other misguided fellow in this thread, so have at it
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Old 03-22-20, 08:43 AM
  #287  
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Waiting at a stop light, five of us formed a staggered formation each six feet apart, like the start of a Forumula 1 race.

The sixth shoaled up the middle to the front of the staggered line.

Facepalm moment (except we can’t touch our faces).

-mr. bill
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Old 03-22-20, 09:07 AM
  #288  
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Originally Posted by wphamilton View Post
So separation indoors is also not reasonable to you. Why are you even asking for virologists to chime in when you won't accept their recommendations?

You're really derailed your own thread here. I won't be responding to further snark from you or the other misguided fellow in this thread, so have at it

Says the guy who pulled a several day old quote mischacterizing what I said, and calls me "the peanut gallery.". You made this personal at that point.

I'm trying very hard to abide by 6 foot requirements in public places including on bike paths, but it is fundamentally impossible to anticipate other people's actions sufficiently to be perfect at it.

I've been very clear throughout that while the distancing requirements make sense on bike paths, I think you're grossly overstating a) the amount of violations likely to occur, AND b) the risk of transient violations that are likely to occur in any outdoor public setting. Quit twisting this into some all or nothing nonsense I didn't say. If you're riding in such a manner that you are riding within 6 feet of a stranger for more than fractions of seconds on a path, then you're a creep with habits that would be bad in any context.
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Old 03-22-20, 09:26 AM
  #289  
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I did a 2.5 hour road ride today in the suburbs. Left home early at 6:00 am, no traffic, I had the roads all to myself... Seen an occasional pedestrian or dog walker and only one other cyclists.
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Old 03-22-20, 09:39 AM
  #290  
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
Says the guy who pulled a several day old quote mischacterizing what I said, and calls me "the peanut gallery.". You made this personal at that point.

I'm trying very hard to abide by 6 foot requirements in public places including on bike paths, but it is fundamentally impossible to anticipate other people's actions sufficiently to be perfect at it.

I've been very clear throughout that while the distancing requirements make sense on bike paths, I think you're grossly overstating a) the amount of violations likely to occur, AND b) the risk of transient violations that are likely to occur in any outdoor public setting. Quit twisting this into some all or nothing nonsense I didn't say. If you're riding in such a manner that you are riding within 6 feet of a stranger for more than fractions of seconds on a path, then you're a creep with habits that would be bad in any context.
I rode on a particular MUP yesterday that I likely won't be riding on again any time soon. One popular section (@41F, sunny) was more dense than many days in the peak of perfect spring/early summer temps. I couldn't hardly get above 10-12 mph slalomming between groups ~5 people back to back to back. Some seemed to be multi-generational families (lots of young kids, but surprisingly high number of elderly), some perhaps groups of friends; but apparently cabin fever is getting the best of people.
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Old 03-22-20, 10:16 AM
  #291  
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Originally Posted by wolfchild View Post
I did a 2.5 hour road ride today in the suburbs. Left home early at 6:00 am, no traffic, I had the roads all to myself... Seen an occasional pedestrian or dog walker and only one other cyclists.
Originally Posted by gear64 View Post
I rode on a particular MUP yesterday that I likely won't be riding on again any time soon. One popular section (@41F, sunny) was more dense than many days in the peak of perfect spring/early summer temps. I couldn't hardly get above 10-12 mph slalomming between groups ~5 people back to back to back. Some seemed to be multi-generational families (lots of young kids, but surprisingly high number of elderly), some perhaps groups of friends; but apparently cabin fever is getting the best of people.

Looks like the combination of depopulated roads and highly populated MUPs might change people's routing decisions.

I did a 75 mile ride yesterday doing laps on the local 12.5 mile MUP. It's fairly low traffic even on the nicest days, but there was definitely a lot of kids and dogs on there yesterday.

I've got to figure out how to motivate myself for long rides when there's nowhere to go. The laps thing was tedious.
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Old 03-22-20, 10:27 AM
  #292  
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Originally Posted by gear64 View Post
I rode on a particular MUP yesterday that I likely won't be riding on again any time soon. One popular section (@41F, sunny) was more dense than many days in the peak of perfect spring/early summer temps. I couldn't hardly get above 10-12 mph slalomming between groups ~5 people back to back to back. Some seemed to be multi-generational families (lots of young kids, but surprisingly high number of elderly), some perhaps groups of friends; but apparently cabin fever is getting the best of people.
This would seem to be a bye-product of the advice and times.. While it's ok to be close to your nuclear family members (unavoidable), the boredom of sitting around the house is leading to families going outside to participate in some sort of recreation together.
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Old 03-22-20, 10:32 AM
  #293  
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I was out the other day. I did probably 60 miles total home. One car driver did slow down when I was out of the city to tell me to go self isolate. Probable because the darn wind was making my nose stream so maybe I looked really sick. Yuck!

I also saw there were loads of people out in the city on their bikes or walking. The roads were a bit quieter and when I got home fairly late the town was deserted because all the bars are closed or at least appeared to be closed (know what I mean). Today it was one of the first sunny days for a long time and I, like most people are trying to enjoy it. Sun is good for you though and being out when it's nice just makes you feel good pandemic or not. You get stuck inside you just going to be miserable and depressed although if you have signs then obviously try and self isolate or avoid other people.

Here they are thinking about forcing people to stay at home. Even the local bike shop said they have had a surge of bike orders and I found myself in the same category (I was going to buy one this year anyway), but like most people it seems pushed their purchase date forward to try and get in before the worst happens or before bike shops are forced to close.

As a commuter cyclist having less cars on the roads is so awesome. By contrast cycling feels a lot safer at the moment, even riding at night there is few people on the roads. Now schools have been forced to close and so many people are choosing to work from home there are not many people out.

I think it's tough. The guidance appears to be that if you're apparently fairly healthy and not too old then you should be fine even if you get it. That may not even be correct though, but I think for many of us that apparently have no signs of it or are not in an area where the virus hasn't gotten a hold it's business as usual.

I don't know what else to think. Life sorta has to go on I guess.
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Old 03-22-20, 10:41 AM
  #294  
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I use some MUPS during my commutes and I do notice that our MUPS have had a lot more people than usual but most of them get busy later in the afternoon. I think a lot of people have "cabin fever" because all of our schools have closed before March break and will remain shut down after March break and many parents can't go to work as they are forced to look after their kids. All the daycare centers and public places where parents could normally take their kids for fun and entertainment are shut down and people are stuck in their homes and desperate to get out. The local MUPS are the only places that they can go.
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Old 03-22-20, 10:45 AM
  #295  
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Originally Posted by Sy Reene View Post
This would seem to be a bye-product of the advice and times.. While it's ok to be close to your nuclear family members (unavoidable), the boredom of sitting around the house is leading to families going outside to participate in some sort of recreation together.

I think the choice is either do that, or worse than boredom will set in. Getting completely cooped up is really hard on people.
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Old 03-22-20, 10:46 AM
  #296  
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There is a four lane road through the section of park near me that’s closed to cars on the weekends between April and October. The local advocacy group got the city to close it to auto traffic starting now because there is so little traffic and so many more people using the nearby paths. Nice job.
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Old 03-22-20, 10:52 AM
  #297  
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Originally Posted by JayKay3000 View Post
One car driver did slow down when I was out of the city to tell me to go self isolate. Probable because the darn wind was making my nose stream so maybe I looked really sick. Yuck!
You should of told that driver exactly what they told you: To go and self isolate themselves.
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Old 03-22-20, 12:18 PM
  #298  
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Originally Posted by wolfchild View Post
I use some MUPS during my commutes and I do notice that our MUPS have had a lot more people than usual but most of them get busy later in the afternoon. I think a lot of people have "cabin fever" because all of our schools have closed before March break and will remain shut down after March break and many parents can't go to work as they are forced to look after their kids. All the daycare centers and public places where parents could normally take their kids for fun and entertainment are shut down and people are stuck in their homes and desperate to get out. The local MUPS are the only places that they can go.
I notice that too. I notice a lot of families with all age groups mixed together. Then I notice all those cars parked at the trail entrances and wonder how they could all be practicing social distancing cooped up in those cars and mini vans.
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Old 03-22-20, 12:20 PM
  #299  
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Originally Posted by wolfchild View Post
You should have told that driver exactly what he told you: To go and self isolate themselves.
That would be the new "Go and f** yourself."
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Old 03-22-20, 12:30 PM
  #300  
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
Bizarre you're quoting me for saying that your assertion that you couldn't maintain 6 feet behind was bizarre, then.

I still don't think transient passes slightly closer than 6 feet while in transit outdoors is a serious concern.

I had to go to the supermarket today. There's an indoor environment where maintaining 6 feet is absolutely impossible.

Sorry, but you're just as peanutty as anyone here.
I agree with you regarding transient passes out doors. I'm continuing to ride solo and I'm generally able to keep my distance from other riders. If someone is riding slower than I want to go, I'll pass them quickly. Otherwise, I back off a good distance and keep that space. I'm not overly concerned with any of that being high risk and rarely am I within a 2 metre distance of another rider, and when I am, it's for a very brief time.

But I also wanted to comment on the grocery store situation: I just got back from grocery shopping, and it actually was possible to keep more that 2 metres from other shoppers for the most part. I was very concerned about this before I got to the store and I was going to skip shopping if it was crowded. However, the store had a security guard out front, and the store was limiting the number of shoppers allowed in at any one time. People lined up outside (keeping a good deal of distance between them) then the guard would allow a shopper in when one exited.

There was a ton of room in the store, and it was easy to manoeuvre around others while keeping your distance. When lining up to pay, there were spots marked on the floor to indicate where you were to stand to maintain a safe distance. The only time I was in closer proximity to another person was when I was paying. I don't quite know what can be done about that.
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