A check to be deposited from my one remaining student gave me the extra push to get out on my bike in spite of myself. As I no doubt said often this week, if only to myself, I hate these all too rare and oh so beautiful days when they come and go while I don’t have the time or strength to enjoy them. There was one quick shot of real Indian Summer, and I went to work, had a short walk, and went back to bed. Today was not quite so balmy, but as pretty a year as when she was young. So, finally, not long before sundown, I wobbled down the alley and just hoped the momentum would come from somewhere.
Of course, once I get out I never want to go home. One of these days I suppose I won’t. Dusk is really the ideal time to be riding, I don’t care what you diurnals say, especially right now with the sun and moon teeter-tottering across the river. The wild variety of autumn leaves we are so blessed with in Ohio makes a passing impression too varied and complex to linger; what really Moooves me, man (Muddy Waters) is the soft purple poured along the horizon contrasting with the warm ochre that underlies all of the vegetation.
In local news, I’m happy to report they’ve finished the fussing over the Henderson Road Bridge, and I no longer feel like I will tip over into the river any second while doing the pass over.
Darn brisk down by the river this evening. I guess I’m going to have to start using gloves and get something for under the helmet if I’m going to continue getting these moments of enjoyment out of the illusion in coming months. though, eventually, the focus moved off of the chill on my hands and head and all focused on my face. Maybe because of the dew and frost accumulating in my beard. I began to develop a theory, looking down at my bright red hands, that somehow it was the redness that was making them feel warmer. Maybe they were on fire.
At the same time, the Olentangy was in an uproar, rising in breakers. I thought I must be
entering the wild and usually hidden territories, when I saw the sign hanging from the side of a bridge, “DANGER DAM.” Strange thing to name a bridge I thought. arf arf. quack quack. Just past the tiny dam, in calmer thinner waters, the ducks and geese arranged themselves in an accommodatingly decorous manner just across from some sitting benches. but, it was getting chillier by the moment and I kept moving, on up to the lake.
There, since I didn’t really know what I would be doing about dinner, I unraveled one of my socks and cast it into the water to catch a pile of catfish, a brace of mahi-mahi, and an old Wendell Wilkie button.
back in reality, I did spy a girl on a tricycle with her helmet perched on the side of her head, like the high-tone ladies all do. No doubt she’d be well padded if she happened to fall over to that side.
then the sun went down. The moon played in the waviest part of the water where I stop on the bridge right before turning down the path back to the commercial sector.
I guess that’s more complete than the previous chapters, anyway. If you’re wondering where they are, they are either partially written or lost in my head somewhere. I write these things while I’m riding, and then don’t feel much like doing all the typing once I start to wind down. I suppose I should get a portable recorder. But, I don’t even use an iPod while riding. I like the depth and resolution of the soundtrack of the ‘world’, even if I do end up riding next to a freeway most of the time. There’s still this spaciousness to the illusion; the level of detail in this simulation is beyond an individuals ability to absorb! I’m put in mind of Cliff’s idea of practicing ‘decentralization’. I had mostly thought of decentralization in terms of industrial and economic issues, but he was talking in terms of consciousness; trying to visualize further and further out in a radius away from himself. In the open air, one can try to listen on beyond the horizon. The earphone world is just the opposite of this, trying to take everything and compress it down and shove it into the center of one’s smallest version of the world, that pesky devouring skull.