I have been thinking about August. Patches of sprightly green grass and the cheery sound of birds chirping have raised the issue in my mind. In fits of utter responsibility, I have even been preparing a little bit for it.
I have concluded that there is going to be a lot of action on the Pemberton Meadows Road in August. The construction for the big power project will be underway and no doubt some very large equipment will move on the only road. I think I see a lot of cracked pavement in the future for people who ride bikes.
I myself bike to work on that road almost every day in the summer months and I am fairly inured to the worst of it. Plus I ride an ancient clunker from Bangkok that might not break under any conditions except for an actual bus. Can the same be said for the lightweight, aerodynamic Ironman bikes?
They are going to be out there all summer, training. I will try to keep my cool when I encounter them riding in a group in the twisty sections of the road. Very little irritates me more than bikers taking up the road when I am working. That and the fact that they are so obviously in far better shape and have evidently chosen bike riding over working. Jealous.
Of course, I am responsible for organizing an event that puts around 4,000 bikers all over the road, but somehow that doesnít count. Itís only one day, for one thing. And for another, they are all busy spending money ó your loss if you complain about it and donít find something to sell.
I do feel a little uneasy with the fact that the very Sunday after the big bike ride, there is going to be a race that seems destined to take over the entire road again. Letís just say I am glad that my event comes first and leave it at that, shall we?
So I started the planning for Slow Food Cycle Sunday this week. The first step is sending in the formal application form to the Ministry of Transportation for the use of the Pemberton Meadows Road. This is Page One of the Traffic Management Plan (TMP). My first TMP in 2006 was a one-pager with a quick outline and a pencil sketch of the road. This was not sufficient, but the ministry official came up to drive the road with me, show me the binder-sized plan that would be appropriate and we got our permit.
Having learned that there were 749 non-compliance events in one year on existing Independent Power Projects in south western B.C., I had planned to write this week about the environmental folly of their very existence. As if that wasnít reason to write in opposition to a power project on the local creek, the economic consequences were emphatically demonstrated with the receipt of a rather large personal home electricity bill and the news that our Crown corporation BC Hydro is under crippling obligation to purchase power from these projects. I moved on to consider the social impact and thought of all the good people in this community who are, in my opinion, wilfully ignoring the facts of the matter, and I finally succumbed to distraction.
These things are being foisted upon us and we are paying for them with our rivers, our money and our community. They are not an inevitability and this is a democracy. We still have a choice, a voice and a vote: use it or lose it.
Anna Helmer insists that council meetings are usually quite interesting.