Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Biking in the Rain

Last Wednesday, I didn't bike to work because I had clients in the office. I was worried that my carefully straightened, professional-looking hair would be smooshed by the helmet. (I know, this is an embarrassing confession, but it is the truth.) I was starting to wonder if I would ever meet my goal of biking to work at least once a week.

Last night, I checked the weather and saw to my chagrin that there was a 40% chance of rain for today. I determined that this would not bring me down, but rather went about my preparations for the bike ride like thinking about what my lunch would be (needs to be easily packable) and packing a change of clothes.

I woke up in the early morning hours from the patter of little raindrops on my window. Nooooo!!! I decided to take a quick shower and hope that the rain would stop. And it did! When I took Sophie out 20 minutes later, it was actually looking pretty good. I happily went about my morning activities and got all decked out for the bike ride.

I said goodbye to Rebecka, got my bike out of the storage space, put on my helmet and gloves and cool sport sunglasses, and headed out the door. It was raining just a little. A light spring rain... Definitely not enough to stop me at this point.

Aaaahhhh - there is nothing like being on a bike in the early morning hours when the world is waking up and there are hardly any cars on the road. I biked up and down the hills toward work full of energy and joy. Pretty early on, the light rain turned into heavier rain. Oh well, I was destined to get wet anyway. I kept on going.

I felt the rain wash my face and drip in behind my sporty sunglasses. Around the half-way point, my "fog-proof" sunglasses were quite fogged up and obstructing my sight, so I decided to take the off and stuffed them in my pocket. That was better (aside from now having zero protection from the aggressive drops that continued to splash on my face).

I wondered what the people in the cars were thinking. "Crazy lady!" or perhaps a secret "I wish I could bike to work..." The ride made me think of living in Sweden and my university days when a bike was my only means of transportation, even in the winter. I thought about people who don't even have a bicycle. I felt privileged to be riding my bike in the rain.

Toward the end of the ride (it takes about 30 minutes), I was wet to the skin. I peddled slowly up the last hills to my office, warm from the exercise and chilled from the wetness that surrounded me. I looked around for a place to secure my bike. Nothing. So I hid it as well as I could behind the building and stepped inside. I fumbled through my wet backpack to find my notebook with the code for the alarm (I really need to memorize that code) and finally made it to my desk.

I pulled out my change of clothes (which were only slightly wet) and headed to the bathroom. I looked like a mix between a member of KISS , a troll, and a tired soccer player. Nice. It felt so good to get into an (almost) dry shirt. My pants picked a perfect place to be damp - right in the crotch. I didn't care. Fortunately, I had an extra pair of shoes at the office. Unfortunately, I didn't bring extra socks.

My maiden voyage confirmed and taught me several things:
  • I should wait and put mascara on at the office to avoid the KISS look.
  • 6 AM is a good time to bike to the office. (Not a lot of cars on the road...)
  • Rain will not be an excuse for not biking to work.
  • I need a rain cover for my backpack.
  • I should keep an extra change of socks at the office.
  • Biking makes me feel alive!!!

Looking forward to the return trip!


Anonymous said...

so inspiring!! I'm wondering what your sport sunglasses look like...and your helmet. good luck with your weekly ride!

Tabita said...

Thanks! I'm glad you enjoyed it. :)

Anonymous said...

Jag läste om dina äventyr i går kväll och satt och skrattade högt för mig själv. Du berättar så livfullt.

Kram, mamma

Tabita said...