Friday, August 5, 2011

Ooooo, that tickles

For the second day in a row I biked to work, which is certainly a small victory for me on my recovery road.  I live less than three miles from work and the ride is marvelous.  Over half of it is on a dedicated path.  It was refreshing today when the weather, as opposed to a new ailment, threw me for a loop.  The hottest July since 1955 finally broke when it became August, and with the break in the heat came afternoon rains.  Don't get me wrong, I love afternoon rains, but they bring a dilemma to a cyclist:  to wait it out or tough it out?  It is with great delight I report that today I toughed it out.

Splashing in puddles is good for the soul no matter the age.  Azalea and Eleanor love to don their kitty and cherry galoshes, respectively, and hunt for the best puddles in the neighborhood.  Their affection for splashing is boundless.  Why do I not have a pair of galoshes?  I do not know the answer to this.  Perhaps there is a social convention against adults marching in puddles, so what better way to splash than at heedless speeds on two wheels?

Do you know what rain feels like when it hits your shins?  It tickles; a faint and pleasant sort of tickle.  Biking in the rain is arguably the only time one could ever experience the tickle of rain splashing on shins.  This is not an experience to be missed.

A trademark of biking in the rain is the kick-back of water and grime from the street up and around the rear tire onto your lower back.  I of course have never had a fender, and this particular property of biking in the rain used to drive me crazy in college when I had people to Impress.  I no longer have people to Impress; indeed, today my grime stripe was a badge of honor.  It tickled, it gritted, it clung, and it only existed when this living, breathing human is pedaled her bike through the rain.

I was so incredibly delighted by biking in the rain that I actually laughed out loud while speeding down the biggest hill on my route.  Laughter begets laughter, and this held true even within myself.  I laughed at myself laughing.  I laughed at myself for laughing at myself.  Then I passed a stalled car and laughed at how crazy I must have looked to the driver.  I decided my anti-rain-in-the-eyes squint also would appear like laughter, and that made me laugh even further.  Fortunately I was nearly home so I could pass on the laughter contagion before it snuffed out.

Today was a bona-fide rain storm, not a sprinkle, so you can imagine that I was soaked through when my journey ended.  It was a warm enough August day that I was not cold.  I nonetheless changed my clothes when I got home, otherwise I would not have dried for hours.                         

Carpe diem.


  1. Sounds invigorating! Victor needs some galoshes...

  2. Yay for bike rides! Even in the rain!