“Winter” Cycling in Corning

by Tillie

Hi Coco,

The shipping container arrived last week and I’m back on the bike! The only casualty of the move was the cheap retro light I purchased back in London, which fell off on my first Corning cycle ride. Great. I’ll have to get a better bracket sorted when the local bike shop opens again in March.

To my surprise, winter in Corning has (so far) been remarkably mild. There has been no snow for over a week, and temperatures well above zero, so I have been cycling a few times now on short errands around town. It’s still ear freeze weather, but all in all it’s perfect for short trips. I’m trying to be less shy about posting cycling outfits, so here is my latest attempt at looking visible and staying warm. So far drivers have been very considerate – giving me a wide berth and slowing down, though some have been shy to overtake me. Yesterday three trucks waited for me to do a left turn! How kind. I hope they weren’t spluttering “stupid cyclist” under their breath or something.

Cycling parking in Corning is a bit lacking, but so far I’ve managed to lock my bike to a bin (outside the coffee shop) and a handrail (outside the post office). The local supermarket, Wegman’s, has a parking lot the size of a football field, which contrasts strongly with the pair of bike stands that aren’t attached to the ground in any way, but at least they make bike stealing all the more inconvenient. I’m thinking about getting a lighter lock and some sort of chain, because lugging my Kryptonite around is probably a bit overkill.

Happily, I’m not the only cyclist in Corning – every time I go outside I see someone on a bike. It’s very heartening. There is also a mountain bike leaning on a tree outside my flat, which has yet to be stolen, which I take as a good sign.

Parking at the flat. Those stairs are deceptively steep!

Sunlight much? That's our car in the background, which we are forced to own due to total lack of public transport.

A perfect day for cycling, no? That white tower is a Corning landmark called the Tube Draw Tower, built in 1912. It was used to make thermometers! The picture on the side is a glassblower.

Creative parking at the Post Office

Corning's Post Office. It's fantastic inside! I almost want to rent a post office box just to hang out there more often.