On My Way, Rain or Shine

Bike in shape? Check.
Panniers packed? Check.
Routes all mapped? Check.
Aikido test in a 95-degree gymnasium last night? Done.

Looks like all systems go for the start of the “500 at 50” bike ride bright and early this morning. If all goes well, I will end the day in Alma, then Cadillac Wednesday, arriving at the campground Thursday afternoon. If not, well, then I will put my Aikido training into use and fit with the situation.

The weather forecast for the Lansing area is for temps in the high 80s, with chance of thunderstorms in the afternoon. Wednesday looks clear throughout the route, and Thursday has a chance of T-storms near Glen Arbor. So there may be a little rain along the way, something I encountered back in May entering Dimondale. I have the rain poncho ready at hand.

Appreciating rain “in the moment” isn’t so easy, but I’ll do my best.

In one of life’s little synchronicities, my Aikido instructor gave a brief lecture on sun and rain following my Kyu test. He reminded us of Kushida Sensei’s saying that while we may not enjoy the rain, it is necessary to make the grass grow, so we can view beautiful green grass instead of brown, dead grass (which we’re all familiar with this summer). So we must appreciate both sun and rain, and in our training appreciate all the sweat, pain, and hard work that goes into improving oneself. I’ll do my best to remember that over the next three days.

Oh, and carbo-loading with a giant ice cream cone from the Coffee House Creamery after the test was great fun.

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