15 November, 2005 Temperature: 34 Degrees
Yeah, I know what I said yesterday. I was supposed to drive the cage today. But that was before I saw the weather forecast and news reports this morning. The expected snow accumulation is now only supposed to be between two and four inches, and the snow plows are already putting chemicals on the roads so this stuff melts as soon as it hits the ground. When I stuck my head out the door, it was only snizzling. (This is my own contraction of ’snow’ and ‘drizzle’.)
The roads were wet, sure, but I have roadraced the mighty Ducati 900SS in the rain up at Brainerd. Thirty miles an hour on deserted city streets should be easy; AS LONG AS I PAY ATTENTION.
It was two degrees above freezing when I left home, but could have been lower in the river valley, so I still had to watch for ice. The heightened sense of adventure I felt was exactly what this project is all about. The streets this morning were even more beautiful, as all the lights I usually see were reflected off the pavement. Inside my many layers of gear, I stayed warm and dry. Keeping my speed down to what I judged the tires could handle in these conditions, my commute took a little longer than an hour. I left home at six a.m., and punched the clock at seven oh-six. Slower speeds and extra caution only cost me six minutes. Not bad.
Turning from Plymouth Avenue onto Xerxes in North Minneapolis, an eight-point buck sauntered out into the street right in front of me. We stopped and stared at each other for a long moment. Considering the neighborhood, this had to be one of those streetwise, urban deer. Struts around like he owns the place. As he stood there, motionless, I could see it in his eyes… I knew exactly what he was thinking. Say it with me, boys and girls, “What are you, NUTS!?”.
After a long moment, he sort of shuddered and turned away. As he was prancing into the woods of Wirth Park, I swear I could hear him muttering to himself in an Eddie Murphy voice, “Man, I KNOW I didn’t just see a dude on a SCOOTER up in here! Musta been one of them ALIENS come down from outer space… yeah. Lookin’ all Darth Vader and sh*t. I gotta quit grazin’ in these backyard hemp gardens…”.
I’ve got school tonight, and it is supposed to snow for real then. It should be a challenging ride home. I’ll tell you about that tomorrow.