The Afternoon

Squirrel cursed me, as I passed below, from the safety of a high perch in one of those trees whose branches intertwine with trees on the other side of the trail, like a natural bridge for small scurrying creatures. "Come down here and say that, you bastard" I yelled upward at the unseen foe. That just encouraged him to hurl even more abuse my way, his loud barks a warning to nearby others of his "kind". But I was just passing through and had no interest in filling out a pot of hillbilly stew this day.

Later. It must have been watering hour at the nursery for when I reached the stream crossing it was clear a wave of water had recently washed through, and still in full flow, taking the mooring for the far end of the plank bridge with it. Not that I would have ever resorted to that course anyway. I was pensive of the blue-green rush, its shimmering surface and clear depths for just a second, before splashing in to discover the sandy bed far enough down to soak both feet for the remainder of the ride, the neon yellow outer skins washed clean of a summers worth of dust. The full experience, a life returning to the water, for a heartbeat.

Not quite a winters silence, yet quiet all the same. Abandoned trails, excepting cyclocross Ken passing the other way, over the dam, calling out in recognition, each (he and I) intent on our own directions, paths to travel, times to keep. Then veering back to the dirt, down the switchbacks. Quiet again, and solitude, into the oaken draw where no sound enters, and none escapes.

The old codger. Geez, put an electric motor on a recumbent bicycle and an eighty year old dude suddenly thinks he is fifty again. Watch out for that guy, Evel Knievel reincarnate. Surely, though, he doesn't take that thing on the dirt. Does he?

Down to the trail around Sailboat Cove where I smile at the girl in the pay booth while gliding past on two wheels. Her head usually down, studying words in a book, but not this day, and she replies with a wave. A heartbeat flutters.

not quite as clean as I thought they should have been after that drenching

switchbacks down into the oaken draw

entry on the Michael Antonovich Trail

riding on the edge

photo bomb

tranquillo

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