I had 3 unsolicited comments on this trip. The first was a woman in her 30's who offered "that's a gorgeous trailer". I said thanks, but what I really wanted to say, channeling my best Joey Tribiani, was "hey, how YOU doin'?". Second comment was a senior couple walking by as I was taking a photo at Safeway and the gentleman stated " we've been admiring your trailer" and his wife added "oh yes". Thirdly, as I was panting after Hospital Hill, two teen girls on razor scooters standing on the corner said " THAT'S cool!" Motorists seemed totally nonplussed and unaffected by my display. The jury is out on that one, but I'm sure one will eventually say something, and when that time comes I will surely report it here.
I've unwittingly built an irresistible babe magnet. Who knew the ladies, young and old alike, were turned on by...handiness. So a very positive initial outing. I may not be the first cyclist with a trailer, but I may be one of the few with a wood mega-trailer. Today I feel like a trendsetter.
PS: I've since replaced the rear derailler with a nice Suntour part someone gave me, which has allowed me to utilize the 32 cog in the rear. While this is certainly an improvement, it is still not low enough for Hospital Hill, but there is really nothing more I can do because the bike uses an old style Ashtabula crankset which is nearly impossible to mod for lower gears. But overall I'm happy with the whole package and the last run to the mall was very smooth.