Monday, March 16, 2009

Rite of Spring?

So today was a gloriously sunny day, hovering in the low 50s. I took my bike out (I'd successfully changed the tube on the rear tire, thank you Broadway Bicycle class of long ago), and hit the road. I actually had to stop to remove my jacket, so I zoomed around in my grey thermal shirt and baggy trousers.

First stop was to see Fred at the glass studio; I hadn't been in awhile and I missed him. He and his wife were there, and they were happy to see me. I hung out for a bit, caught up, and was sorry that I'd missed a big installation he'd done for a children's hospital. He offered me some pastries that the restaurant owner next door had brought over, and I munched on them, then he brought out the pickled veggies he'd made himself.

"Wow," I said, chewing. "Lemon cake, then cauliflower soaked in pickling spice, habaneros and garlic. Interesting combo here."

I'd packed my laptop, thinking I'd head to a cafe, but realized I'd forgotten my bike lock. Rats. I biked to the cafe and hung out a bit, hoping that perhaps someone else would bike up to lock their bike, and let me share. But no. So I walked the bike a bit, window shopped, then headed back home.

As I cruised the streets, I was aware of the coolness in the air, the sun on my back. I noticed I had a bit of a sniffle, but what the heck.

The sniffle increased. I was now gulping great big sniffs. At some point it dawned on me that I had a nosebleed. A big nosebleed.

I stopped, pulled over onto the sidewalk, and pressed my hand to my nose. I was wearing bike gloves, and if you've ever worn any kind of bike handgear, you know they all have a terrycloth patch that's billed as being for wiping sweat.

Yeah; we all know it's for snot. Biking can give you a runny nose, and the terry cloth is for that.

I was asking it to do overtime, as I pressed each terrycloth patch to my hemorrhaging nose. One hand, then the other, than back. I sensed I was reaching critical capacity. A woman walked by, and checked her bag for Kleenex, but she didn't have any.

"No worries," I said. "I'm wearing a play shirt." And I moved my sleeve up onto my face.

When I felt like I could chance it, I pulled my wrist away and wiped every part of my face I could, hoping to get it all. At an SUV I stopped and did a mirror check. Not bad; I decided to leave a little on to intimidate motorists.

Back home, I rinsed everything out. Tomorrow's supposed to be in the high 60's. tomorrow I'll remember the bike lock. And the hankies.

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