Two friends followed me out of the neighborhood recently as raindrops began to fall on our helmets. We had decided that it being Sunday and church service beginning at 9:45 later that morning, an early ride was required.
We knew rain was in the forecast as we started off at 7 am... while Robert mentioned that indeed drops were falling on our heads. It was then that I thought to myself whether fun included being wet and cold and whether hypothermia might be an unfortunate realization... and how soon this ride might end. But then the drops ceased.
A few miles on our regular route we usually pass the local reservoirs. This time the cool air and warmer water resulted in their being covered in mist.
Riding by so many homes quietly perched on the waterfront but without any activity instantly made me feel like I'd somehow been given the privilige of an experience others had chosen to sleep through. As it was Sunday, there were only a few cars that passed us which gave us plenty of room - perhaps they were already in a gracious Sunday morning-going-to-church-early mood, leaving us happier as well.
As we briefly stopped waiting, like all good cyclists should, for a light to change we were passed by a group of Canadian geese flying in formation and headed to fields unseen... just barely passing over the tops of trees.
It was at this moment we all noted how special the morning had become.
A few climbs later with cool air hinting at the coming Fall we sped into the rolling countryside. Cows stood fence-side eyeing us for breakfast and awaiting the warming sun to peek over the horizon. It was then that we looked to our right over a meadow where we witnessed a pink sunrise.
A few miles later and to our left a rainbow appeared over rolling forests. Dark gray skies framed its colors better than had the sky been less menacing. I think it's fair to say we were all enthralled.
What an amazing morning I wish everyone I've shared bicycling stories with could experience.
We finished about 2 hours after we had begun. Our bikes did gather some road grime as it must have rained just a mere miles ahead of where we rode... but regardless of the wet roads, impending rain smell in the air, or dark clouds above... drops never fell on our heads.
An hour later I sat in our local church's pew thinking that I had in fact already been to church... just on a bike saddle instead of in the sanctuary.
I've been thinking back to that morning a lot lately as the stresses of my teaching profession have taken hold I think it just might have been a favorite all time ride. Beautiful views, quiet roads, God's blessings, and good friends.
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