Day 3, Part One: Misty Mornings

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Motorcycling is different from driving for a couple of reasons, but the most significant is probably in the way a rider is always exposed to the elements. A foggy morning isn't just “colder” than a dry morning: you feel the condensation on your skin, see the mist on your visor building up ever-so-slowly, and you can even taste the difference in the air. Dry mornings are cold, too, but it's a different quality of cold. Something like the sound of wind in your helmet might be comparable to the road noise of an older car (however much louder), but the buffeting you feel when a truck drives past, accompanied by the smell of whatever exotic cargo is in the trailer, is something that makes for an entirely different experience.

These qualities of a riding experience are more than just a given. In a car or a truck, everything about your trip is a reflection of the way you respond to the vehicle, so a “bad day of driving” usually has something to do with lower back pain you got from sitting at you desk too long, or not having air conditioning. On a motorcycle, the road is just as important as the vehicle, the temperature changes depending on sunlight or shade, and a bad day of riding involves chattering teeth, a cramped wrist, and a bruise on your leg from a rock that bounced out of the gravel truck you were following.

The morning of day 3 was foggy, but not too cold. Not a great morning for riding, but not a terrible morning either. In fact, given my state of mind, it was almost ideal. The atmospheric twist really makes all the difference.

I was digesting some of the things Edward and I talked about the night before, still marveling at the way his life has changed over the last five years, at how fast his kids are growing (Samuel can almost talk already, and Aden is obsessed with Transformers...), and when I began reflecting on the past six or seven years of my life, on the way that things have become so dramatically different for me than I'd ever expected... well, the path ahead seemed strangely familiar, and riding through the mist compliments that come-full-circle sensation nicely. I'm 24 years old, and I'm going back to University for another year, probably another five or six years, so that I can do “what I'm good at.” Five years ago, that's what I thought teaching in an elementary school would be. I feel like I'm ready for a Master's degree, but when the road dips into the valley and everything turns into a cloudy haze... Well, it's a good thing that I've learned to pray first and ask questions later.

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