|Hot afternoons, nearly empty paths|
|Shade, water, bicycle|
Certainly the rising heat. Afternoons approaching one hundred eff. Blazing sunshine out of a cloudless sky against single-digit humidity. Turning on the AC. Rising levels of dehydration during rides. More bottles of water required. More sunscreen needed. Thoughts of any clothing beyond the lightest, coolest, more comfortable, long gone. Caps with brims, sunglasses, avoidance of mid-day and scuttling from shade island to shade island on foot.
|Still together, but decreasing in number as they increase in size|
People not from this area or neighborhood asking about the bats around sunset. Excuse me, do you know where the bats roost? Yes, yes I do. But I'm not sure if they're back yet, or even if they'll be coming this year. Since I just read Elizabeth Kolbert's The Sixth Extinction, I am hoping they return in large numbers, hoping they fly out every night to skim the canals for insect meals, but I have doubts and fears about that, now. Now whenever I see bats, or hear frogs croaking in the night, my heart skips a beat, and I wonder if it will be the last time.
|Added the Crane bell from the parts box, for making music with cicadas|
I can feel it in the late afternoons, around the hottest time of day. By agreement, by consensus, people begin to not ride their bicycles when it is perceived to be too hot out. It's a pretty sharp dividing line, when afternoons of springtime joy exuberant riding transition to too-hot-to-ride-now perception. People stay in, to watch TV, or to go shopping, or whatever, and quite suddenly, the trails, the paths, the streets are nearly empty of bicycles at that hour.
That's exactly when the summer fever hits me, though. Time to acclimate. Time to think about carrying two water bottles, work on the homemade electrolyte mixture, ensure sufficient supplies of good sports-oriented sunscreen are secured. The sweat beanie under the helmet is already a winning addition to the summer gear list. The summer songs are starting to go through my head out there. I think it's here. It certainly feels like it.