Today I thought I would be extra productive and run home from work, stop by the house pick up Cadence and finish off the 8 miles we were scheduled to run with her, ending at the dog park. I’ve ran downtown from work and to the canal and back, but never home. I’ve always wanted to though. The problem isn’t where I work, which would be considered a sketchy area by most. I work on east 10th street… but the mile of the run that is on 10th street isn’t scary, it’s the last 5 miles that are scary. You have a few route choices, but so far I haven’t found one that feels right.
The most likely choice would be running west on 10th and hitting the monon home. The monon is just 1 mile from the center. However, as much of a badass I think I am for working in the hood, it’s really unsafe because the monon is super secluded south of 46th street. So, I headed over to college and ran up that all the way home thinking I would feel safe because it is such a busy street. FALSE. I did not feel safe.
The first thing I did wrong was wear my ipod. Although I only listened to like 2 songs, because I wanted to be on guard the whole time, it still made me look like a target for stupid kids to steal. So as I was running up busy college, I just kept imagining someone pushing me into one of the 50 abandoned buildings and doing who knows what. So, as I ran by about 100 shady characters, (yes I am stereotyping) and about 5 pitbulls, I thought I am never doing this again.
So, since I ran home from work, leaving my car there, I had to get in in the morning, so I decided to ride my bike. The bike ride in was fine, it took about 35 minutes. I went over to Washington Blvd. and took that all the way down to 16th street, weaving over to 10th. Not scary at all, but took way longer than riding down the monon would have.
So when I got off work it looked like it was going to rain and I wanted to get home as fast as possible…..I decided I would just try the monon… how bad could it be? It was horrible. Completley secluded. At one point around 21st street a guy came stumbling out of the bushes and started yelling “hey girl come here”. I think he was just drunk and harmless, but I still pedaled faster than I ever have before.
I got to the bridge at 38th street and see some more people that seem like they are up to no good. Two guys. I am so close to home… everything in me just wanted to pedal on by as fast as I could. I am sure, just like the drunk guy down on 21st they are probably harmless, but I didn’t want to take my chances. I get off and ride around fall creek and over to the 38th street entrance to the monon (adding time and frustration to my route) and get my butt home.
I really dislike that I can’t feel safe and not worry about crazy people doing crazy things. Why can’t a girl just ride her freaking bike down the monon and be safe? I’m trying to avoid being cooped up in my terrible car when the weather’s nice!