|Egret in Cedar River today. I volunteer to wade in the polluted waters too. It was hot, hot, hot!|
|Come a little bit closer, you're my kind of bird, so cute and so tall.|
|A closeup. From the lion bridge, so we're zooming a lot.|
How hot was it? Well, I’ve never web-enabled my not-so-smart phone, and although my bike computer has a thermometer, I don’t know how to use it. The actual temperature today was in the upper 90s, but the heat index, taking humidity into account for the mischief it does for human comfort, was in the three digits.
Did I ride? Well, I can’t control the weather during RAGBRAI, so, yes, I did.
Slowly. I’m usually slow anyway. Today, I must have seemed glacial. I snailed along the trail, taking my time, drinking my wine. It was white and alcohol free wine, made exclusively of two parts hydrogen to one part oxygen (amounts not given by weight).
Anyway, I did about 30 miles total today in 3 rides, one of them in the hottest part of the afternoon. Hit it, Noel:
The ride was hot, windy, and fine. As was the case during RAGBRAI last year, I found myself surprisingly uncomfortable but otherwise OK in the heat. This year, the techno bike jersey helps, so the ride was doable. Good practice for any especially hot RAGBRAI days that I hope don’t happen because they would really suck.
The most uncomfortable part of by body was the wettest. My head. The helmet is good at building up a storage of liquid so that when you pause and take it off, you go EWWW. Maybe I should shave my head for RAGBRAI? Naw. Sunburn.
The heat in my head had a poor impact on my brain, I think. Anyway, I had ridden on the downtown trail, and was headed back toward campus to say hi to Audrey, when I was stopped by a train at the construction site of the new central library. I could have gone north on streets, but that would have violated my strict “take it easy in the heat” biking rule, so I parked Old Blackie and was idle while the train snailed by (it seemed to be taking it easy in the heat, too—maybe the whole world was).
As I enjoyed the hundred-degree heat, I idly inspected the artist’s rendition of the new library. It was amusing to me partly because it was exactly backward from my point of view, but OK. Anyway, as I looked at the image, I started to have questions.
Why do so many people hang out on the roof of the library?
Why does that pedestrian look so depressed, shoulders hunched, watching the ground as he walks along? Did the library not have his favorite Bill Bryson book or the second installment of “The Hunger Games?”
|From a distance, a school girl. But on second thought, a burly Scot in a kilt, |
and he looks neither harmless nor happy.
And then there was her. Or him. At first glance, a school girl in a plaid shirt. But a rather large, burly looking school girl, who the more I looked at her, she became “him.” A rather muscular Scot kilt-wearing psychopathic murderer, looking for the next victim whose eardrums and brain s/he can shatter with his pipes of death.
No wonder Mr. Pedestrian is depressed. With Jack the Mac Ripper nearby, he’s not expecting to get out alive.
Finally, the train moved on and so did I and the handful of other Mad Dog Englishmen bikers who were out on this scorching day.