June 1st is the official start to the Rainy Season in Florida. We need the rain badly, as the lakes are below their normal levels and countless turtles take their lives in their own hands to find a patch of mud on the other side of the blacktop. As much as we need the rain, as much as I want my veggie garden to thrive...I am weary of the rain as well.
I ride to work every day and if I didn't have my paper route to do two days out of the week I get the feeling that my car would sit for weeks without moving. I don't necessarily see this as a bad thing. I am planning on replacing one of my two cars eventually and using the bike full time anyhow. The problem is that my experience riding in rain is limited. Over the past two years or so that I've been riding some sort of scooter I can count the number of times I've ridden in the rain on one hand. One of the first things I bought when I got the Burgie was a good rain suit. It sits under the seat in it's pack...waiting. I have a 50% chance of getting wet tonight, a 70% chance tomorrow.
Ride to Work Day. I'm always amazed that there are 3 or 4 other motorcycles at work, that I know of, and yet my old Scooter is always parked there. I do understand that there may be reasons why someone can not ride to work. I also understand that their are other alternatives - for example when I lived in Pittsburgh I rode the bus every day despite that fact that I could have driven in and parked for free. It was just easier to ride the bus. A girl at work owns a Prius and a Harley, yet the Prius gets better gas mileage than the hog...so yea, I get it. However it seems to me that if you own a bike, you should ride it. Not just on the weekends or from Tavern to Tavern but to work and to school and to the grocery store.
For example, the other day I was in Tampa on business and driving past an ancient woman riding a Peace scooter. Her toothless smile was so wide that you could get lost in it. She had a look of pure, simple, childish joy on her face. I could not help it and yelled out "YOU GO GRANDMA!" and got the biker wave in return. Some images you have burned into your brain and have to acknowledge them. I know that years from now I'll be riding somewhere with that same grin and sense of childlike wonder, I only hope that someone see's me and that I impress them as much as she did me.
That is one of the reasons I write. To share these impressions and images with others. One of the other reasons I write is to hopefully teach someone else something...anything really. What not to do, what to do. To just get them to think about something differently for a moment or two. One blog that does a fantastic job of that is "How to ride your scooter safely." If your riding any sort of two wheeled vehicle this is required reading.
Finally, if your not familiar with a site called Fuelly, you should be. It's designed to give you hard figures on your fuel consumption as well as tips on how to increase it. It's not hard to use and it should be interesting to see how my car's and bike compares to others over time.