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Thread: Car Free Chronicles

  1. #51
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    Good on you Judd! I would definitely like to get rid of the car as well, and maybe we will one day. Much of when I drive is because it's "easier" to drive than bike sometimes - essentially the car is a temptation. Living outside of the beltway with stressful cycling routes isn't great, but I am seeing excellent progress in the trails and low-stress cycling routes in my area (eg. Cherry Hill and Sellman Avenue trail construction connecting Paint Branch Trail to the Little Paint Branch Trail). Please keep us all informed on the progress you make with groceries, if you pursue a trailer, etc. I might use you as inspiration to drop the car meself!

  2. #52
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    Pete just posted on Twitter that he's downsizing to one car: https://twitter.com/ThePeteD/status/1060692900126908418

    I thought it would be a good time to post an update. I donated my car to WABA on March 27th this year. It was a 2006 Honda Civic with about 140,000 miles on it and in need of some new bumpers. The donation process was really easy. A tow truck came and got it and I signed over the title. I got a letter in the mail a few weeks later stating that it had sold at auction and that WABA would receive $2,500. So that's a good thing.

    There's probably only been a day or two that I missed having a car. I had a family reunion in Richmond this summer and rented a car to get down there. Rode my bike to pick up the car. If I had planned a bit more in advance, I probably could have taken a train instead. I also drove to Illinois for a high school reunion and made several stops on the way back. There was also a day recently where it just rained all day and I wanted to make a run to the store, but didn't because I didn't feel like getting wet or sweating in my rain gear.

    I've done most of my grocery shopping at the Harris Teeter in Shirlington. It's not a great grocery store and I find the layout funky. I did try the Giant in Bailey's Crossroads, but there's not a route there that doesn't involve lots of climbing in traffic or riding on a torn up portion of Columbia Pike and then climbing. I also tried out the Giant off of Four Mile Run across from the apartment building that was just demolished. That's also easy to get to although, it's not a great store. I do miss the Giant in Penrose near my old apartment.

    I moved the majority of my stuff from the old apartment to the new apartment by bike except for the furniture items and some heavy things like my tool boxes. Josephine came got in on the panniers full of pots and pans and other random things. A bike move is pretty fun.

    I'm living right next to Four Mile Run Trail so getting most places is fairly easy and I no longer have to ride on Columbia Pike every time I leave the house. One challenge has been that because of the amount of rain this year, the fair weather crossings of Four Mile Run have flooded a lot. I'm also reluctant to use them at night after a crash on Four Mile Run Trail this year that caused a knee sprain that took over a month to heal. During those times, I'm forced to use a narrow bridge that is only really wide enough for one person and has a lot of traffic.

    It's a little bit more difficult to get to some places in DC than in my old apartment since I'm a couple of miles further west. I've also found with the new location that I tend to visit North Arlington a lot more. I use Bluemont Junction a lot now and wish there was a big sign on the W&OD pointing to Bluemont Junction. I also end up visiting Crystal City a lot more since I frequently take Eads coming home from work.

    I'm still very happy with my decision to go car free and don't feel like it's impacted my life in any negative way.

  3. #53
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    Default trying to delete the "dislike"

    Sorry, Judd... I'm having a "hover select" problem with this new computer. I did NOT mean to dislike your post!! (I am also shutting down browsers, waving to people I barely know on Facebook, etc...desperately want to fix this cursor issue!).
    Is there any way to delete a "dislike"?

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  5. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by Judd View Post
    I've done most of my grocery shopping at the Harris Teeter in Shirlington. It's not a great grocery store and I find the layout funky. I did try the Giant in Bailey's Crossroads, but there's not a route there that doesn't involve lots of climbing in traffic or riding on a torn up portion of Columbia Pike and then climbing. I also tried out the Giant off of Four Mile Run across from the apartment building that was just demolished. That's also easy to get to although, it's not a great store. I do miss the Giant in Penrose near my old apartment.
    If you break your shopping into somewhat smaller, more frequent trips, you can stop along the way home from work with one extra pannier (and maybe a backpack). I do this all the time, and there are numerous places I can stop either along the way or just a short detour off my route. I would say I make a separate shopping trip only about 1/2 the time; the others are combined with other trips.

    Here's a route to the Giant in Bailey's that still requires climbing (seriously steep) but avoids traffic pretty much altogether.
    One tiny improvement: you can avoid getting on Columbia Pike by turning right as you come down the hill from the Serrano Apartments and go around the old bank building. Then cross straight onto Jefferson at the light.

    This pic is looking north from the intersection of Jefferson and Columbia Pike showing where you would cross after going around the old bank building.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    I used to use this route to get to my daughter's dance studio and still use it when going to Skyline or REI and such. wheels&wings uses it all the time, too.
    Last edited by Steve O; 11-09-2018 at 10:28 AM.

  6. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by wheels&wings View Post
    ...desperately want to fix this cursed issue!).
    ftfy

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  8. #56
    lordofthemark's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve O View Post
    ftfy
    JK Rowlings tackles IT problems - Harry Potter and the Curse of the Cursed Cursor.

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  10. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by Judd View Post

    I've done most of my grocery shopping at the Harris Teeter in Shirlington. It's not a great grocery store and I find the layout funky. I did try the Giant in Bailey's Crossroads, but there's not a route there that doesn't involve lots of climbing in traffic or riding on a torn up portion of Columbia Pike and then climbing. I also tried out the Giant off of Four Mile Run across from the apartment building that was just demolished. That's also easy to get to although, it's not a great store. I do miss the Giant in Penrose near my old apartment.
    I agree with your assessment on both of those grocery stores. The Harris Teeter is the most confusing store I've been in, and the giant is good, but small so it doesn't have many options if you're picky. I use the Safeway on King St that BPAC is held at most often for my groceries, but that's a bit out of the way for you.

    Have you considered any of the grocery delivery options? I know you telework, so it may be convenient. I do costco delivery for the bulky stuff (soy milk, giant containers of olive oil, 6 month supplies of toilet paper....although they also deliver perishables), and many of my coworkers use prime now, or peapod. I know I'm within the whole foods delivery zone on prime now, so you likely are too.

  11. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by Emm View Post
    I agree with your assessment on both of those grocery stores. The Harris Teeter is the most confusing store I've been in, and the giant is good, but small so it doesn't have many options if you're picky. I use the Safeway on King St that BPAC is held at most often for my groceries, but that's a bit out of the way for you.

    Have you considered any of the grocery delivery options? I know you telework, so it may be convenient. I do costco delivery for the bulky stuff (soy milk, giant containers of olive oil, 6 month supplies of toilet paper....although they also deliver perishables), and many of my coworkers use prime now, or peapod. I know I'm within the whole foods delivery zone on prime now, so you likely are too.
    I'll second those suggestions - between delivery options and smaller grocery runs (we do have a very convenient Trader Joe's to M's school), we haven't missed our car yet for shopping needs. Honestly, assuming our plans don't change, the first time I'll really miss the car a bit is getting to DCA this weekend w/o Metro running.

  12. 11-09-2018, 11:41 AM

    I really need to log off the internet and go for a ride.


  13. #59
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    TwoWheelsDC is offline I really need to log off the internet and go for a ride.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Emm View Post
    IThe Harris Teeter is the most confusing store I've been in
    Fun fact: no two Harris Teeters are even remotely the same! The one in Hill East, the one in Navy Yard, the one in Pentagon Row...all totally different.

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  15. #60
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    "Fun fact: no two Harris Teeters are even remotely the same!"

    Good to know. The Harris Teeter in Lee Harrison Shopping Center is better than any Giant I've ever been to, so I was puzzled.

    I'll go car-free when they pry the steering wheel from my cold, dead hands (with ~40,000 a year dead, a real possibility), but I'm down from 35k miles a year to about 10k, and up a coupla thousand on the bike. Most of my groceries are picked up from My Organic Market on Lee Highway right by the Custis on the ride home from work, supplemented by the farmers market and beer runs, of course.

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