06 September 2016

Keeping Hermine At Bay

Sometimes I think meteorologists give us dire weather forecast for long holiday weekends out of resentment. After all, while the rest of us are having fun, they have to stare at computer screens or whatever else they have to look at to tell us The World As We Know It is about to end.

So it was for the weekend that just passed.  First Hurricane/Tropical Storm Hermine was supposed to land on our shores late Saturday afternoon. I figured I could do a ride to Point Lookout before then.

 For much of the day, that prediction seemed accurate:  Ominously dark clouds darkened the sky as the sea churned.  But--wonder of wonders--the clouds broke somewhat and the sun shone through.  So, instead of heading home from Rockaway Beach, I continued along the boardwalk and boulevard to Riis Park and Coney Island, and along the Verrazano Narrows promenade toward my apartment.

We got more or less the same forecast on Sunday:  Hermine in the afternoon.  So I thought I could sneak in a pre-lunch ride, say, to the Rockaways and back.

The weather belied the forecast:  With each mile I rode, the skies brightened, even as  the sea grew choppier and the wind stiffened.  I decided to "play chicken" with Hermine:  I would ride as if I could keep the rain at bay simply by riding.   After a while, I actually started to believe that I could!

Once again, I rode a good bit longer than I originally planned.  I was happy for that:  I did two good days of riding when, according to the weather forecasts, I should have had only one.

But Hermine was still rearing her head.   When I got home, I heard more dire predictions of her paying us a visit some time Monday, Labor Day.  Once again, I took a ride, hoping to get in a few kilometers (or miles) before the storm struck.  But I didn't "play chicken": I stuck with my plan to ride along the North Shore to Fort Totten, a two-hour round trip with a stop to enjoy the view at the Fort.

The rest of the day, though windier, was even brighter than the morning or the day before.  I had a few things to do, so I didn't go back out to ride.  Still, I was happy to have done three rides:  one long , one of medium length and a shorter one.  

Finally, the rain came this morning, just as I was about to go to work.  I lingered just long enough for another cup of tea, and to stroke my cats a few more times.  The rain passed, and I--almost without effort--more than made up for the time I procrastinated and arrived at work a few minutes earlier than I'd planned.

 Image result for a hurricane in the distance

The next time someone asks you about the benefits of cycling, tell them that one cyclist (yours truly) "saved" Labor Day weekend:  She kept a hurricane away simply by riding! ;-)   

And to think we all can change so much more by cycling!

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