Bike Ride Home through the Rain

The light sprinkling spatters my visor as I walk to the bike. I start her, and let her warm up a bit while I adjust the elastic shower cap that keeps the tank bag dry. I flick on the headlight modulator, and slowly pull away from Jim's big hog. The flooding has subsided in the parking lot. My bow wave is minuscule. I merge into the solid wall of traffic on Broadway. Five minutes to get to Swan. Then the light turns red, the arrow turns green...

...and I'm off alone on Swan. Baby's had a while to warm in traffic, so I shoot her right to the redline through the turn. Second, redline, third, redline, fourth, school zone, third, second, first, purr, purr, purr, end school zone, redline, second, redline, third, scan for cops, no cops, redline, fourth, cruising. Fifth and sixth are for mundane commutes. I let her sing her 9k note in fourth. "Warp speed, Captain! The visor is now clearing!" She's itching for more, but I hold her back. Someone's got to be the responsible one in this relationship.

The water beats on my chest, sucking out the heat that's been weighing me down all week. The hail stings brightly but shallowly, the wind slips under the visor I've cracked to clear the fog. It's cool against my face.

I hit a four-inch deep wash crossing the road. I am Charlton Heston. The Red Sea rises in two walls beside me and deigns to allow me to pass.

I enjoy the incredulous looks of the folks trapped within their cars watching life pass them by through the windscreen that comfortingly reminds them of their TV screens at home. Talking on their cell phones or listening to their radios so they never have to face the fear of an internal dialog. They do everything possible to distract them from the sheer primal joy of driving. Sometimes I think they just don't get it.

I pass two motorcycle cops going the other way. I'm barely doing the speed limit, so I wave. They wave back. We might not always see eye to eye, but those guys know what it means to cross town during a monsoon.

I love riding in the rain.