Three consecutive days with highs in the mid 30s (~ 100 F) is considered a ‘heat wave’ in NYC. Laughable if you come from India but not so humorous when you take into account how sudden the transition was. From a low of 14C (60F) one day to a high of 36C (97F) the next! Add to that a humidity index of over 70% and you’ve got the best of Indian summer scorching down at you!
So it was with some trepidation that I set off from home on the second Sunday of June to join 500 other bicyclists on the first annual Tour De Queens. The venue: Flushing Meadows-Corona Park, right by the Queens Museum of Art and in the shadow of Arthur Ashe Stadium, where tour marshals braced themselves to lead riders on a 20 mile route through the largest borough of NYC.
The route would take riders through the western perimeter of Queens along waterfront greenways, parks and a gamut of neighbourhoods ranging from residential to historic to the industrial, finally ending back where we began. Ten neighbourhoods in all – most of which I had never seen before!