Some people read the stars – I think I’ll write my own. – Taiko Commute

Last Thursday was such a brutal ride in the very cold rain – so bad, in fact, that I didn’t even want to deal on Friday.  Then this weekend was still cold, raining, and conflicts came up so we didn’t ride at all.  So yesterday, I went into my taiko commute  ride with higher hopes amid, perhaps, a little trepidation.  The roads were wet and the air cold, but it felt liberating to be on two wheels.  The cool air was exhilarating and felt like a foretaste of the midwest to which we return so soon.  The weather in the Bay Area has been strange – thunderstorms with snow sticking almost at sea level and for sure falling and staying in the hills.  It gives this place a look that reminds me of Seattle with mountains covered in snow near the bay and ocean water.  Far and beyond the most beautiful thing I saw last night was not on the road or the earth at all.
El Camino Real is usually the worst pat of the commute.  It is straight, long, flanked by parked cars and busy with speeding traffic.  After the wide tree-lined shoulders and bike lanes of Foothill and Fremont, El Camino is a chore to deal through for the last half-hour of the ride.  Last night was different.  As I listened to Big Audio Dynamite on my iPod – singing sarcastically about suburban life not upsetting the Applecart, and singing about Mr. Walker – an astrologer who the singer counters by saying “Some people read the stars – I think I’ll write my own.”  As I listened to those words and sounds from my childhood an orange glow appeared on the horizon.  This part of El Camino pushes straight toward Mt. Hamilton – if you can look beyond the Indian strip malls, stop lights, and cars, you can make out the observatories of the summit.  Just north of the summit, I was treated to an orange moon slowly rising for I guess several minutes of the ride.  Sensing the earth dropping away from the moon in its rotation gives the illusion of going downhill – I savored that!!        In addition to being beautiful, it was symbolic of travelling, of being outside where I ALWAYS know what phase the moon is in – waxing or waning.  And Chandra – the face of the moon.  Somehow watching the moon rise tied together the importance of a journey as opposed to a trip.  We are not just teleporting, but we will breathe the air every step of the way between here and Madison.  For future, for love, to better ourselves and hopefully our world.
I sprinted throughout the ride feeling energized and ready for the journey ahead.  I pushed hard through speed squats and circuits at the taiko studio.  Ready.

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