PA-IPL Bike Trip Day 4

New 606 contributor Ben Wideman is sharing his insights this week from his Interfaith Power & Light bike trip, an opportunity to people of faith to travel PA on bike and address climate change on their way. 
Water. We can’t live without it, and too much is problematic.
Two days of rain makes a cyclist feel many different things. When rain begins it can be refreshing on a warm ride. A light mist can be cooling on a sunny day, and a pasting shower can be a minor inconvenience. But two days starts to feel downright frustrating. Water in our shoes, water in our clothes, soaking wet clothes, and water trickling down our backs. Rain so soaking it that it pushes its way through raincoats and rain pants. Rain that makes us shiver when we are standing still and makes any descent both treacherous and also stinging in the way it pounds exposed skin.

Image may contain: bicycle and outdoor

Long days of riding in the rain also makes us grateful for the way it greens our lives. It makes us grateful for warmth at lunch stops and our final destination. It makes us appreciate the small things like wringing our socks and gloves, and the feeling of climbing off the bike at the end of the day.

I am always grateful for hospitality on a long trip like this, but the past two days have increased that ten-fold. Today’s lunch was an incredible meal at a local Middle Eastern restaurant in Brunswick, MD. Our hosts at Am Kolel Retreat Center, and Joyce and other local friends from the Poolesville area have provided us with incredible warmth and welcome (including a vegetarian meal provided from a local farm-to-table restaurant. Water has been present in these spaces too – from the food prep, to the warm showers, to the green and growing spaces, water has been involved.

All that to say we have experienced water… the best parts and the hardest parts. We are ready for less water, and we are grateful for water.

Ben

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