It’s funny, the very things I expected to dislike about city cycling, or at least find uncomfortable, have turned out to instead number among my favorites. For example, biking in the rain (bonus: doing it in January.)
When I first started bike commuting, I avoided riding in the rain. I mean, who wants to be wet? And cold? Wet and cold on the crowded Boston streets, tires kicking up grime, cars honking and driving too close. That swishing sound as they slosh past. On one of my first rides, I recall whining to a friend whose house I was departing and his expression of sympathy. At the, I remember thinking, crossly, whatever! He doesn’t care!
And then I got out there on the SouthWest Corridor, my tires singing that low, splashy song. Everything smelling a bit brighter. I noticed the pretty little spray created by my front and wear wheels. I realized that I practically had the path, the city, to myself. And I experienced an attitude adjustment (like what the teachers warn about in middle school.)
Truth be told, I don’t love all the rainy days -and sleet just plain hurts! But if it’s a mild January evening and I’m heading out for that six-mile stretch from Cambridge to Jamaica Plain, sure. Get a little magic of the clean, quiet city along the way . . . I’m down for the ride.