First Anniversary of The DC Bike Blogger

Posted: February 6, 2015 in Miscellaneous
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

PennAve1

With today’s post I mark the first anniversary of this blog. It was one year ago today that I got a bike from where I kept it in the parking garage of my office building, went  out on my lunch hour for a bike ride down Pennsylvania Avenue and around the downtown area, and then posted An Introduction to Me and My Blog later that day. Since that time, I have written 266 additional posts about the places and events in and around D.C. that I have visited during my lunch breaks at work each day.

First of all, I am thankful that I was fortunate enough to remain safe on my rides during this past year. In 2014, pedestrians and cyclists were struck by drivers of vehicles at least 515 times in D.C., several of which resulted in fatalities. And the number of incidents is already 29 in 2015. There have also been some instances of bike riders colliding with pedestrians who stepped out in front of them. Although I was involved in a couple of minor incidents while I was riding, neither of them was serious. One incident occurred was when I got “doored” by someone in a cab that didn’t look before starting to get out. The other happened when a cyclist to my left passed me and then quickly turned right, leaving me no ability to avoid colliding with him. Despite these incidents, maintaining an awareness of my surroundings, riding defensively and always wearing a helmet helped me avoid anything worse than a little “road rash.”

I have been using my lunch breaks at work to ride around and explore the city for a few years now. But this is the first year that I have been writing about it. And I have found that adding the writing element has helped me enjoy the riding even more. By researching and organizing information about my destinations, and recounting and adding in my thoughts during the ride, I have been able to focus my attention, pay more attention to details, and better appreciate what I encounter when I am out on one of my bikes. By this measure, I consider the first year of The DC Bike Blogger to be a success.

The statistics provided by WordPress.com, which hosts this blog, also indicate that it has turned out to be a successful inaugural year. I didn’t have any specific expectations when I began writing about and posting photos of my mid-day explorations of the city. But if I had, I think those expectations would have been greatly exceeded by reality.

I am especially surprised by the international representation among the blog’s readership. During this first year, The DC Bike Blogger has had readers from 91 different countries, including some that I had nevert heard of before.  So I looked those countries up to find out about them.  In order of the greatest number of readers, in the past 12 months the blog has been visited by readers from the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Germany, Australia, India, France, Brazil, the Netherlands, the Russian Federation, Spain, Italy, Indonesia, Belgium, New Zealand, Thailand, Philippines, Sweden, the Republic of Korea, Hungary, Ukraine, Bermuda, Japan, Venezuela, Mexico, Chile, Ireland, Romania, Bulgaria, Malaysia, Singapore, Honduras, Poland, Switzerland, Finland, Pakistan, Argentina, South Africa, Taiwan, Lebanon, Israel, Viet Nam, Denmark, Nigeria, Turkey, the Czech Republic, Greece, Kenya, Hong Kong, Peru, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Norway, Colombia, Cambodia, Ecuador, Slovenia, Slovakia, the United Arab Emirates, the Occupied Palestinian Territory, Serbia, Estonia, Ghana, Croatia, Egypt, the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Côte d’Ivoire, Cyprus, Austria, Guam, Bangladesh, Liberia, Portugal, Qatar, the Republic of Moldova, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Iraq, Chad, Malta, Sudan, Belarus, Albania, Jamaica, Saudi Arabia, the Bahamas, Jersey, Oman, Morocco, Latvia, Lithuania, Ethiopia, Costa Rica, Bahrain, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Lao People’s Democratic Republic. However, there are currently 196 countries in the world. So, one of my goals for the future is to eventually have readers from the remaining 105 countries.

By researching the places to which I ride, I’ve learned a lot during the past year. Even when it comes to places I thought I was already familiar with, I learned things I never knew before.  In addition to the information about the destinations, I have also learned a lot during the act of riding to those places.  During my bike rides I’ve had a lot of time for thinking and contemplation. And I’ve discovered that you can learn a lot about life from riding a bike. I’ve written down some of the things I’ve learned on a page entitled Riding Lessons, and these things are equally as important to me as the places and events about which I’ve learned.

My plan for the future will be to continue using my lunch break to ride on every work day that I am able.  I may venture out occasionally on the weekends as well to visit places outside of the city that are a little further away.  However, I may not be as prolific in my writing during the coming year as I have been during this past year.  I plan on focusing on destinations to which I have not yet been by identifying two, or sometimes three specific places to write about each week.  On other rides I will simply enjoy the ride and the city in general.  I think this will be a more realistic pace for me for ensuring a sense of balance with all of the other things that demand my attention and take up my time.  Writing about two or three places per week will also establish a pace that will allow me to reach one of my original goals for this blog by the end of the coming year, which is to write 365 total blog posts, thus compiling a list of different places to go and things to see each day for an entire year.  I then may try to organize it all into some sort of travel guidebook.

I look forward to continuing to ride and learn and write in the coming year.  I have already identified more places to visit in the future than the number of places I have already seen and written about so far.  From the major monuments and memorials to the off-the-beaten path attractions, there is so much more to D.C. than most people think.  And I plan to continue riding and then writing about what I see, what I learn, and what I think about while I explore this unique city, one bike ride at a time.

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Comments
  1. Beachbums1 says:

    Congratulations on your one year anniversary. I enjoy reading your blog.

    Liked by 1 person

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