Friday I biked home for the second time in two days with a co-worker. We both bike a lot but generally he has taken a different route. I notice that one of the many small perks of being a bicyclist is that when you decide to ride home with a bicyclist (as opposed to a car person) the bicyclist does not have to leave their vehicle at work. The other good thing is that you can ride together exactly as long as is convenient and then split up whereas if you are both in the same car one person has to drive you to your house before they can drive home.
It was a pretty uneventful ride. But pleasant. I spotted a guy with a bicycle and wagon and no lights and offered him some.
me: want some bicycle lights?
me: you sure?
him: Positive. I live right here.
...and so we went along to about Palo Alto where I met up with the Contraption Captain. We all had a cheerful bicycle meet at the side of the road before co-worker rode away. Not to go on too much but.. how often do three cars meet up on their travels and lean over and slap each other on the back and wish each other well? Not often. Bicyclists may not all be in a community, and we certainly don't all know each other, but we meet up and become acquainted at least some of the time. Cars never meet up unless they are colliding with each other and having a big metal on metal accident.
At El Camino and Sand Hill the Contraption Captain and I pulled up at a red light. We were joined by a group of about five young bicyclists. I eyed them surreptitiously. Few lights. I hesitated. The one in the lead had a white light fixed awkwardly to his glasses. As I watched it fell off. I looked at Contraption Captain and he made a "why not?" face. I got out my lights and said something like "hey, here are some lights for you." The pretty young woman looked delighted, "Thank-you!" and then they started considering the best way to deploy the lights in their group for maximum visibility. The light turned for me and I pedaled off, a little awkwardly, as I had not shown them how to put the lights on or collected the small cases that keep the lights from going off in my backpack.
But I think it was ok just the same.