Monday, July 5, 2010

It Might Rain, Or Maybe Not

To a commuter like me, sometimes there are days that you didn't ride to work and wished you had. I am serious about trying to commute to work with the scooter every day I can. Cold or hot weather usually doesn't stop me from riding. Some days the weather totally defeats the possibility of riding. Snow and ice are obvious reasons not to ride. Light rain I can handle, but I prefer to avoid thunderstorms, (I'm very afraid of lightning). We can regularly get some pretty violent thunderstorms here on the plains. Then there are days that the weather forecast might not look so good. On those days you might second guess the prediction of the forecasters. Maybe it's a day where the morning ride looks good, but the afternoon ride looks iffy. Or vice versa. Do you chance it? I sure hate those days when I decided not to chance it and the weather turned out to be nice. Some missed opportunities. Of course there are also days when the weather prediction looks good, but a surprise storm develops and you get caught in weather that you would rather have avoided. Can make for an interesting situation and possibly an exciting story. I personally don't get too crazy, but I do sometimes like to "push the envelope". Maybe I decide that the weather people don't have a clue. Sometimes the decision to get crazy and "go for it" just depends on whatever mood I am in. And then I fully admit that there are at least a very few days when I just don't feel like riding to work even if the weather cooperates. The reasons can vary. Sometimes I "wimp out" from just feeling lazy. Some days I might be tired (physically or mentally). If I'm tired, I get concerned about how alert I will be while riding. I seldom "wimp out" though. And on iffy days I am generally cautious. But riding energizes me. There is almost always at least a little rush of adrenaline. It's a great way to start and end a day. I hate to miss out on a ride. Hell, maybe I'm just preaching to the choir.


  1. Summer weather patterns here in the Heartland are so very unpredictable. I, too, am concerned by lightning. A couple of weeks ago a local mail carrier was hit by lightning while on her route. She died.

    To ride or not to ride? My Grandpa, a farmer seemed to be able to sense what the weather was going to be. I can't remember him ever getting caught in the field by the rain. I'm clueless how he did it. Me? I would get wet a lot more often if it wasn't for radar. Here the lines of storms run in waves and I've just made peace with adjusting my departure time in the morning and not being in a hurry to get home so that I can ride between the waves. You mentioned in the post about "Riding with a dinosaur" your wondering if you would have even noticed the bird if you had been driving. My relationship with the weather has been transformed by my riding. Ironically, it has become less an adversary. It is just one more condition to work with on my daily commute.

    All that said, it is sure wonderful to see those occasional summer days that have a 0% chance of precipitation.


  2. Dear CPA3485 (Jimbo):

    A I have said in the past, getting caught out in the rain can be an adventure if you are already on your way back to the barn and only 20 or 30 miles away. I can handle those days just fine. But I seldom start out in a drizzle nor a driving rain. My thinking is "What's the point?"

    Since I usually have my computer with me (and always check into a place with WiFi), I'd just assume spend another night in a hotel (if I am out on a trip) as opposed to dodging cagers on a wet roadway. As far as going out on an iffy day, I'll ride if the forecasters are calling for a 40% chance of rain. They are usually wrong. But warnings of viscous storms will or violent thundrrstorm activity will always get my attention.

    A freak storm a couple of weeks ago knocked down trees all over the place with wind gusts of 75 mph. Even though we are a suburb of Philly, the electricity went off here for 30 hours.

    I haven't been riding nor writing motorcycle stuff for a bit. The heat here has been oppressive (routinely between 95º and 98º), which is hard on the body armor. Plus I had a few health concerns that provided a bit of a distraction. These will be the subject of a blog soon.

    Fondest regards,
    Jack • reep • Toad

  3. Keith,
    I too like those forecasts that say 0% chance. Sometimes I am pretty sure a 10% chance is a sure thing as well because the forecasters say 10% just to cover their butts in case something wierd happens.
    Thanks for popping by, your comments are always welcome.

  4. Jack,
    I agree with "what's the point". I never have anything to prove. And although I have ridden in rain, I prefer not to. And as long as thunder and lightning aren"t involved, I don't really mind that much as long as the rain occurs on the way home. If it is on the way to work, I might be damp for a few hours.
    Jack, my doctor has been telling me for many years that my cholesterol levels are out of whack. In the last few years I have dropped from almost 220 lbs to about 185 and it has had a good effect on the cholesterol. I used to take fairly expensive drugs, which I really think don't do all that much. I am not out of the woods yet and still have some habits that aren't too good for me, but have been encouraged by some improvement. The main problem for me seems to actually be hereditary, which is hard to do anything about.
    I hope your situation isn't too serious. THat would indeed piss me off.