And so I spin through the fog.

It’s Sunday morning and I get up early as I am wont to do. Looking out the window, it’s immediately apparent that a dense fog has settled over the landscape. It’s eerily quiet outside and as I roll down the driveway and out into the road, the silence is punctuated by a single bird, cutting through the mist with astonishing clarity, then fading to nothingness almost immediately as I pedal away.

The temperature is surprisingly moderate – it looks colder than it is -but the feeling of chill on my arms catches up to the appearance of the conditions as moisture beads up on every hair. My beard is dripping within minutes, and I pull out arm warmers when I realize I left my lightweight windbreaker at home.

Somewhere the sun is coming up. I know this because the mist has brightened, though the low visibility remains constant. Also: a chorus of birds have joined in to accompany the original lone soloist. The din is almost jarring as I pass a small lake and stand of trees, both of which suddenly emerge from the blanket of white through which I travel.

Before long my body has warmed and I begin to peel out of the layers. My arm warmers, which fit snuggly, are rolled down toward my wrists. I enjoy the sensation of escape and the breeze rushing over freshly revealed skin. The air is heavy and thick, a bit like trying to breathe underwater I suppose – the humidity is 100% at the moment, and with the chill I decide it’s better to ramble than race. And with that thought in mind I take route options that circumvent the steepest climbs: my purpose today is to pedal, to spin, and forgo mashing.

It took time for my knee to heal. It no longer rebels when I climb, but every once in a while I feel a slight twinge and for a moment I panic. But the twinge always goes away. So far, anyway.

And so I spin through the fog, enjoying the moment.


Why morning?

For as long as I can remember I’ve been a morning person. I like wandering around before the day has begun, before anyone else is around, before my iPhone starts the continuous vibration that indicates one more person has emailed me with a question, a concern, a suggestion. Even the dog leaves me alone, minutely raising her head from the couch she’s not supposed to be sleeping on, a single eye briefly opens nearly to midpoint then closes again, followed by snores.

Cycling in the dark before dawn and in the low light just as the sun is coming up is nearly always a wonderful experience for me. This was particularly so yesterday morning, the air cool and still – a welcome break from the noxious humidity of the last four or five weeks, the atmosphere at times so thick it was nearly unbearable.

Despite a cool start, this morning marked the return of humidity. As usual, I was alone with my thoughts riding along dark roads in the dusk just before dawn. Cresting the horizon, the sun brought forth light and sound: First birds, followed by the roar of cicadas. Returning to the city I was surprised to see the number of runners and cyclists enjoying the early morning. Perhaps we all were in search of early morning solace as a sort of preventive salve for the coming wave of heat.

I don’t want to stop.