November 10 , 2004: Rain or shine
I still haven't adjusted to the Daylight Savings switch. The early darkness sows melancholy and disturbs my finely tuned circadian rhythms. It just sucks to watch night fall from your office chair. 5 PM seems like 7 PM and 7 PM feels like midnight. By the time I get home, I feel like it's time to start the nightly shutdown procedure and get ready for bed. Every night, I'm fighting the urge to go right to the sweats and the recliner as soon as I get home.
I also haven't had to deal with inclement weather in a while, so tonight's ride was a bit uncomfortable. That's OK, I'll harden up as the winter goes along.
Standing out in the backyard, it seemed to me that the fog was especially heavy and wet tonight, so I started out wearing my rain shell. Turned out to be somewhat premature, and I had to take it off half an hour later after I had become soaked from the inside.
It was a night of futzing: pulling the rain slick on and off a couple of times, fumbling around with the camera, stopping to scribble incoherent notes in a wet, pulpy notepad. The halting pace of the ride belied my enthusiasm level. I'm just doing my 20 and going home.
Inched through a backside EG over into Princeton and then up to the Fitz. From there, I followed my standard route through the low side of Moss Beach County (MCB) across the Cabrillo to Carlos Street and into Montara. From there, a quick rip into McNee to the base of Gray Whale, then back through the POST turf to Sunshine Valley Road, across the Cabrillo back to the Fitz and home.
Speaking of the way home, by the time I hit Etheldore at the bottom of Sunshine Valley, it had started to rain. By time I got to the Fitz, it was raining hard. I had my shell on and everything else was sealed, waterproof, or expendable, so I settled in to tough it out. I was only about three miles from home, but it was really coming down and I was worried that the water was running down my neck, through the collar of my shell, and onto the camera. I rode from the Fitz to home in a kind of Dick Cheney crinked-neck tuck trying to puff my neck out to fill all the gaps in the collar.
A good thought, but it lessened visibility even more, and as I came mudding through Pillar Point marina, I paid the price. Leaning into a corner of trail near the parking lot, I caught a pedal on a board sticking out the ground. I don't crash a lot, but I've gone down enough to now recognize that there's always a split-second of weightlessness, where time stands still just long enough for you to realize, "uh-oh, something doesn't feel right!" That feeling is rarely wrong. So it was tonight. The back wheel popped up off the ground and I was catapulted highside onto the wet and tractionless parking lot asphalt. As the bike went down hard on the pavement, I flirted with going down, but was able to just barely run it out and stay upright. A couple of scrapes on the leg from the handlebars, but nothing worse that a little bruised pride. Of course there's always someone standing there watching when these things happen. I nodded coolly to the amused spectator, nonchalantly picked up the Hoo-E, and pedaled off like it was all in a day's work, which it was.
On the plus side, though it was cloudy and damp, it was cold and there was no fog, so I was able to ride with my glasses. Yeah, it's really nice to be able to see those fine points of the trail like rocks, ruts, and turns (although sometimes it still doesn't help -- see preceding paragraph).
Tonight I sighted a burrowing owl in the Fitz, some field mice, and a skunk in Moss Beach.
|Mileage: 17.07||Time: 1:32:43||Avg: 11.0||Max: 31.0||Weight: 175|
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