Stories I could tell

When I racked up more than half of my 400km ride total in September via commuting, I related a few stories of things I’d seen. I rode my first commute of October today, and garnered a couple of more tales on my way home this evening.

GPS record of cycle ride
Crosby, Stills, Nash
GPS record of cycle ride
… and Young

But they’re thirsty!

There’s a brief rise just about at the midway point of the commute. It’s a good, wide section of road, with wide sidewalks on both sides. Where I’m climbing up the rise on the way home, there’s a railing at the edge of the sidewalk, and just inside that a low row of bushes. As I puffed my way upwards this evening in the trail of a delivery truck, I noticed a white stream arcing from a townhouse to my left, over the sidewalk and into the bushes. There was a woman standing on her balcony one story above the pavement, holding a garden hose, and watering the bushes — by jetting the stream of water right over the sidewalk.

She had pretty good aim, too!

In certain South American countries, this means we’re married

With less than 3km to go, I stopped to wait for a light at a crossing. I watched the changing of the lights carefully as I balanced at the corner with one foot on the curb, and launched across the intersection just as the light turned green.

But I wasn’t the first off the line! From behind me, a woman on a DoCoMo bike (electric rental cycle) was already on the move, zipping past on my right, nearly clipping my handlebars, before she cut right across my line to mount the sidewalk.

Ahead in the street, a bus waited at a stop. The woman was going to the sidewalk to get ahead of the bus. Meanwhile, I put the pedal down and powered my way around the right side of the bus as it continued to wait at the stop with lights flashing. As I came back to the bicycle lane on the left, there was the woman, trying to come off the sidewalk and back into the lane. Fortunately she recognized my right of way and let me go ahead.

But that wasn’t the last I saw of her. She overtook me again as I waited at the next red light, speeding on through the intersection without a care. Once again I overtook her when the light changed, this time without any drama. The next time I hit a red light — at a pedestrian crossing this time — I was expecting her, and there she was, once again sailing through the red. This time I followed her a few dozen meters as I waited for cars to pass us both, before once again overtaking her. For the final time, as it happens.

A touch of the ol’ breeze

It was cloudy and ominous when I left the office this evening, and the wind was up. Despite the color of the sky, I wasn’t really worried about rain. As for the wind, I ducked my head and did my best.

“You’re late!” Nana declared when I arrived home. I looked at the clock: just an hour after quitting time. I often am later even when I take the train.

“What do you mean, late?”

“It’s dark out! And I haven’t brought in the laundry yet because I know you’ll want a shower.”


This weekend is shaping up to be perfect for bicycle … maintenance.

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