It’s that time of year again and this time, I have to admit, it’s really, really rough.
I’m talking about warm spring days (it was nearly 18 degrees at our house on Saturday afternoon) with the sun shining and, the worst part of all, other bikes on the road. It’s not that I begrudge anyone their first ride of the season, really I don’t. I just want to be out there with them.
It seemed like everywhere I went this weekend, I saw other people riding motorcycles. There was a guy in Chester on Saturday when I stopped for a coffee. Two couples on two bikes drove by our house just after I got home. We drove into Bridgewater to do some shopping and, you guessed it, there were more bikes.
We have a perfectly sensible rule in our house about how long we have to wait to ride after winter ends. At least for most of the year it seems like a perfectly sensible rule. It’s just for three or four weeks each spring when it really matters that it seems like a terrible rule designed only to make us suffer.
The rule is five rains. It has to rain a significant amount, not just a sprinkle, five times after the last salt and sand is dumped on the roads. The salt, Steve tells me, is bad for the bikes. The sand, he so sensibly points out, is potentially dangerous for traction, particularly on curves. The rains wash it all away so we can once again hit the road.
I must admit I’ve always watched with some amusement as Steve looked out the window clearly fretting when the temperature dropped and the salt truck went by after he’d started his count. Until this year, I was always prepared to wait out the weather. But now that I’m no longer just hanging off the back of Steve’s motorcycle but instead riding my own bike, my patience is in very short supply.
And I don’t think I’m the only one. When a bike goes by the house, all three of us look toward the road. Jake then looks at Steve and I as if to say “what are we waiting for?”
Since I can’t very well teach Jake to count five rains and Steve isn’t likely to budge on the rule, I guess we’re both out of luck for now. But if it rained really hard for a day or two, I wonder if that might count as extra?