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Thursday, July 19, 2012

Caught out in the rain again....but with different results

Every week on a Wednesday I have to drive into Tampa.  As I ride around I look for scooters.  On any given day I see about ten to twelve out riding on their scooters, but since it was a rainy miserable morning I really did not expect to see anybody riding anything.

Trash bags can be fashion too!
I saw six people riding scooters - everything from a little 50cc Sunbeam to a 650 Burgie - out in the rain.  I saw maybe one or two motorcyclists.   The riders wore everything from a poncho made out of a green garbage bag to full rain gear to just a tee shirt and jeans.  "Well if they can do it," I thought, "then I can too."

The chance of rain was going to be lower than it had been but their was still a good chance I was going to be wet.  It seemed the storms started to roll in when I was ready to roll out and head to work over the past week.  This time however I was going to be smart; so I packed a change of clothes (including underwear and shoes) and put them under the Burgie's seat.  I kissed the girlfriend good bye and took off down the road.

I had gone about 10 minutes when I saw the traffic heading towards me with their wipers on which could only mean one thing.   I was heading into a storm.  So I pulled off onto the side, well off the road, and pulled my rain pants on and zipped up all the zippers on my jacket to ensure no water could get in...and hit the road again.

It started lightly at first...then harder...then reached a climax of a steady warm thumping on my helmet.  It was a summer shower that would last the rest of my ride into work.  Steady and strong but never threatening. I watched my speed, made sure I had about a 3 - second stopping distance between me and the cars ahead of me. I avoided the slick paint of lane changes and road stripes.  In other words everything that a motorcyclist should do in the rain.

I stayed dry.   I stayed warm but I never felt "hot."  I started to hum "The man that sold the world"  to myself.     In other words I was enjoying myself.    Once I got to work and took off my gear I was pleasantly surprised.  I was dry.  In fact, the only time I got we was heading from the bike to the door to the building.


Keith - Circle Blue said...

I, always wear my raingear into the courthouse. I find it funny when people who are soaked from their walk from the parking lot ask me, "How can you ride in this stuff?" When I get to my desk and take off the gear I'm dry. When they get to their desks their still wet.

I mostly love riding in the rain. When you can't see because the rain is a solid sheet of water and the wind is wanting to blow you to and fro, that's no fun, but a nice steady downpour is great. There is a silence in the rain. I like riding into that silence.

Nice post.

Martha said...

Good post, good points. I've worn a garbage bag as a rain jacket. I was at a horse race. It was summer. I was just as wet inside from sweating!

You do face your challenges head on. I admire that.

David Masse said...

Nice post Robert.

This season I've been blessed with virtually no rain.

As I write this I'm in the office waiting out a thunderstorm.

Rain is one thing, lightning is another. In the car I feel protected by the Faraday cage effect. On the bike, I feel to the contrary that lightning my seek me out.

So here I sit, getting more work done.