Slamming down the freeway into deteriorating weather. Cool and blustery, the temperatures had already plummeted 35 degrees below what they were the night before and they were still dropping fast.
The weather guy almost danced as he explained that our high for the day occurred at midnight the night before.
An interesting commute.
Snow in the panhandle. Rain to the north. Sleet to the west. A fast moving front and disturbance marching through the city.
A blue northern. Big. Powerful. And dark.
Massive, foreboding clouds raced me through the cityscape and made for a dynamic and almost “artsy” landscape. The occasional sunbeam that broke through the cover just managed to highlight how truly threatening the rest of the sky was.
Raging winds out of the northwest rushed me south, with the occasional massive gust rocking the big cruiser just to make things interesting. Thirty mph sustained. Forty-four mph gusts. The weather guy almost danced about that too.
A thousand pounds of man and machine just shrugged it off and powered through.
Fat but scarce raindrops spattered down in clusters to add to the “texture” of the day. The city roars on and pretends not to notice.
All in all, a dangerous morning. The instinct knows this…and its screamed warnings of oncoming storms and other things lurking in the threating sky and heavily shadowed landscape are almost drowned out by the illusion of order in the city. Years of indoctrination have “taught” us that order prevails over nature…and these warnings…these instincts…are something animal and not to be heeded.
So the illusion holds and we ignore the warnings…mostly. Some of us listen, and least with a part of our souls.
We are not all as civilized as we are supposed to be. The Dark Side of the Man nudges its way to the surface…and I set it free…just a bit.
The big cruiser and I, tearing up the freeways, know our lives depend on our skill, a little luck, and understanding the threats and forces around us…even if those threats cannot be best perceived in a mundane way.
It’s a hunt. A game between hunter and prey, with neither really sure which they are at that moment.
Instinct, passion, and perception…discouraged in polite society…are required here.
Thoughts…threats…instinct…perceived and acted upon by the entity that man and machine have become. Blood. Muscle. Steel. Fractional, precision inputs manipulating powerful forces that take us where we visualize we will be. Piloting these machines is an act of sheer will.
Never too much thought. Over analyzing isn’t warranted.
This lane is wrong. I don’t know why. I don’t care. What’s it cost me to change over one?
Get off this road. There are plenty more where that one came from.
Slow here. Cars cross in front of me in the space I would have been. Some cue…some input, may have just saved my life.
More throttle NOW! Always okay by me. Almost a mantra.
Riding the winds, twenty miles of city passes in an instant.
I skid to a halt in the parking lot at work, seemingly delivered out of the sky by the strong gusty winds.
The hunt over, I back the big cruiser under the shed parking and sit there in the saddle a moment, exhaling slowly and stretching my arms from over my head to straight out beside me.
The smoking area is adjacent to the motorcycle parking. A coworker there…a young lady I did not know, chose that moment to speak to me, “Sure is a bad day for a ride!”
She actually stepped back when I looked over at her. I would guess some of the storm…some of the darkside…was still showing in my eyes.
Bad? I suppose it should be. I should have been cold, cautious, and miserable. Instead I was…enthusiastic. Maybe even primal. My main thought was that I couldn’t wait to go again.
What I had to do was dismount and go in to a small cube in a windowless…soulless building. What I wanted to do was ditch work and take off into the increasing chaos. I wanted to challenge…to conquer…to experience…that “bad day.”
I had no clue how to explain that to her though.
Have I explained it to you?