Monday, June 22, 2015

In Which Flowers Help Ease the Pain of Emptyness

Bike. Anonymous other biker passes by my bike, which has a rare flat tyre.

A flat tyre! On only the third ride!

The unnamed new bike cannot be ridden at the moment. On Father’s Day, my youngest son, wife and I went out at about 10:30 for a bicycle ride. A muggy, but nice and sunny, ride.

I could do whatever I wanted to do that day. What I wanted to do was ride my new bicycle.

We again used the Cedar River Trail, and again went south, because I stubbornly wanted to find the detour. If you read the previous post, you know that I wondered were the trail detour went after it took you east to Council Street, where it appears it wanted you to go back west.

The apparent answer was oddly comical. The detour leads back to Center Point Road. So it goes all the way a half mile east to Council and then doubles back so that it can have you cross 42nd Street at a corner with a “walk” light, which is commendable, I suppose. Except that there is also a walk light at Center Point Road. Why not just cross there—why the pointless ride east to Council Street to get a walk sign that was available way back there? Bikers wonder.

Anyway, I don’t know how far the detour goes along Center Point Road, because when we got to the New Pioneer Coop, we knew we could cross the street and head up a little side street to the trail. So we did. And right as we started to ride on that little side street, that’s when I noticed my back tyre was flat.

And the tyre was not a little flat. Not a “pump it up every few miles and keep going” flat, although we didn't have a frame pump with us anyway. I’m talking an empty void, totally hollow, flabby and useless, like a Donald Trump campaign speech.

So the son and the spouse headed back north to go get our van and rescue me, while I locked the crippled What Are We Going To Call It to a bench.

To pass the time, I photographed flowers. It doesn't seem like a particularly flowery time of year, but in a short stroll near the bench were the crippled bike was locked, I found quite a variety to photograph.

Milkweed in bloom, and vertical, too.
Why Blogger, why?
I was on a mission, of sorts. I wanted to find Milkweed, which is in bloom now, and I also wanted to take a cute photo of a baby Monarch Butterfly.

There is Milkweed along the Cedar River trail, but none near the bench were my bike rested. (MMU bike club, what should be done about that?) However, I spied a patch growing adjacent to a nearby parking lot, so part of my mission was fulfilled. Sadly, there were no caterpillar sightings, nor did I see a chrysalis, although I don’t know for sure if I would recognize one. (Then again, given the size of Monarch Caterpillars, the chrysalis should be pretty big).

Oh well. Better luck next time. And I don’t aspire to collect flat tyres (in case you’re wondering, I just like and use the British spelling on this blog because they invented the bike tyre and ought to be allowed to name it), but I guess practice changing tyres on my RAGBRAI bike may prove of value.

We were planning to go kayaking later anyway, and we did. And here are the other flowers or berries:

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