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Scenes from a commute...

Some of these were taken on the ride in, and some were taken on the ride out, which is why the drastically different lighting conditions.



Abandoned railway bridge and below that a footbridge across the Charles to the Shaws Supermarket parking lot. For want of a better identifier, the dam is just "the Shaws dam". (A decade ago it would have been "the Ames dam". I should look it up and find out what it was originally called.)


Okay, jumping back to the "start", which for the purposes of this essay is riding home from work in Cambridge.



Part of the path in Cambridge, on the south side of the river.



Big section along the path of tall, vividly purple flowers. Don't know what they are. I think I've heard that they're an invasive weed species or something, which is a pity, because they're very pretty. I was almost too late to photograph them -- noticed them first on the Tues. ride, then stopped to do it on the Friday ride, and a fair number of the flowers were gone.



Monarch butterfly, in and amongst the skillions of bumblebees methodically working over the blossoms.



Little bike waits for me to finish taking pictures. (Which was waiting on the sun coming back out from behind a cloud.)



From Watertown Square westward, there are a bunch of places where they have built the path out of boardwalk like this, usually just short stretches where they don't trust the riverbank. This section is near a footbridge over the Charles, taking the path from the south side over to the north side, near the Stop 'n Shop supermarket.



The footbridge (from the north bank).



It's a really cool-looking bridge. :)



Each end has the twin granite posts with the Charles Riverway heron symbol on it.



The river on one side, heading downstream towards Watertown.



The river on the other side, sunset reflected on water.



A bit upstream from the footbridge -- back at the Shaws dam again. Sunset, really big dead branch caught on the dam.



Same area. Really gigantic willow trees, log benches beneath for sitting and looking at the river.



Patch of wild purple flowers across the river, reflected in the water. Same ones as before.



Alongside the path just downstream of the dam -- I also don't know what to call these blue flowers. (Sadly, the light in this pic doesn't show how vibrant the color is -- a really vivid periwinkle.) A little earlier in the summer, this patch had a much larger variety of wildflowers in it. Now it only has these blue flowers, which are everywhere in MA right now; but they are only open in the morning. When I ride by this is the evening, it looks like there's no flowers in this patch of tall grass at all. It's weird.

I need a guide to "weeds in Massachusetts" or something.



And waiting for me at home... a crappy photo, unfortunately. But I know what Emily was doing just before I came up, because I took a picture of her doing it just the other weekend:

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Comments

( 9 comments — Leave a comment )
miera_c
Aug. 2nd, 2008 02:53 pm (UTC)
This section is near a footbridge over the Charles, taking the path from the south side over to the north side, near the Stop 'n Shop supermarket.

Ooh I know right where that is! :)

Pretty!
eregyrn
Aug. 6th, 2008 06:41 pm (UTC)
Heh! Yeah, if you frame the picture JUST RIGHT, it looks VERY pastoral, rather than as urban as it really is...
katie_m
Aug. 2nd, 2008 03:23 pm (UTC)
Big section along the path of tall, vividly purple flowers. Don't know what they are. I think I've heard that they're an invasive weed species or something, which is a pity, because they're very pretty.

Purple loosestrife. They are indeed nasty and invasive; they crowd out cattails in particular, and aren't as useful habitat-wise. Pretty, though.
troyswann
Aug. 2nd, 2008 04:01 pm (UTC)
wow, these are beautiful pictures, and what a nice way to go to and from work. I would think it would give you a nice calming break to spin up and then down again between work and home.

I particularly like the ones of the dam and the railroad bridge. And of course the pretty bike!
eregyrn
Aug. 6th, 2008 06:45 pm (UTC)
Thanks! :)

It *is* a nice route, and on balance, it's proven to be relaxing. (The not-relaxing parts are the not-pictured bits that involve crossing very large, busy streets; fortunately with crosswalks and lights and all, but still.) It's even better when the temperature is reasonable. (When I started this a few weeks ago, not only wasn't I in the best shape for it, but it was in the 90s and humid.)

I think if it were about a mile or two shorter, it would be more ideal/relaxing. Not that the 7 miles one way isn't *good* for me, I think -- and I was noticing yesterday that, maybe it's partly the weather, or maybe it's just conditioning, but it does feel a bit easier than it did. But still, when I hit that last mile, I really do start to get this feeling of "yeah, I'm done", and there's still a mile to go. Will be interesting to see if that too fades.

With my luck, I'm going to get good and conditioned for this ride, just in time to have to stop doing it for the fall/winter!
barkley
Aug. 2nd, 2008 04:49 pm (UTC)
That looks like a great path to bike to and from work on! I R Jealous!
jenlev
Aug. 2nd, 2008 08:04 pm (UTC)
Wonderful photos, and aw, kitty! *smoochy hugs* just because.
emmieyiza
Aug. 4th, 2008 07:13 pm (UTC)
Not sure, but I think the blue flowers are chicory.

Beautiful photos!! Go biker you!! (LOVE your basket!)
eregyrn
Aug. 6th, 2008 06:40 pm (UTC)
Yeah, the blue flowers DID turn out to be chicory! :) Good eye!
( 9 comments — Leave a comment )