Gail rides her bike to work every day, even yesterday, a day that began at thirty-four degrees with sleet pelting down. I like to bike to work, but that’s the problem: I want to keep on liking it, and when the temperature’s less than forty degrees, or when freezing rain threatens to turn me into a glazed confection, and especially when both of those springtime disasters are happening at the same time, I give it a miss. Sort of a rule with me.
But not Gail. She loves to ride her bike to work even when the weather is freezing, the streets are ice-covered and slippery, and wimps like me are driving to work in the comfort of our well-heated Toyotas. “I just keep a change of clothes in my office,” she says, and while I give her points for foresight and perseverance, the part about bicycling through freezing rain frankly cancels out all the positives as far as I can tell.
She can even get excited about riding in the rain, something else I don’t like to do at all. She wandered into the break room while I was boiling water to make tea and gazing at the rain pouring down on the street scene outside. “Oh good, it’s raining!” she chirped. “That’ll melt all the snow and ice. I was a little worried it might be slippery on the way home.” But not worried, I guess, about being soaked through and contracting hypothermia.
I wish I had Gail’s attitude, or just her bullet-proof imperviousness to adverse conditions, but I don’t. I’ll start biking to work again when this apocalyptic weather lets up.