Today’s commute started like many others, with the exception of a satisfying drop of a mountain biker who for some reason chose to cut me off on a sidewalk. There, I’ve established two things: I’ll brook no meddling mountain bikers at least on pavement and secondo, that I aspire to go fast in relation to others. While it had been raining all day, right about the time I left work the sun started to break through a little and a good time was both had and made until I flatted on the BGT next to the U. I’d flatted the night before, and had tweezered out the offending piece of glass, and so naturally that came to mind first but when I felt the back wheel start to have a strong rub I knew something was different about this flat. I started to slow down when the rear brakes froze up entirely, forcing a skid stop. Looking at the rear tire I saw that part of the bead had come outside the rim and the tube was audibly expanding, pressing out against the brakes, the reason for the lock up. Then, while bent over, the tube gave with that distinctively deafening pop. A quick switch out and then I limped along to Counterbalance for air and a couple of spare tubes. A fellow locking up a Miyata next to the Trucker said, no kidding, hey that’s a nice rack, in reference to the Tubus, and of course I had to respond with “Are you saying I have a nice rack?” I don’t think he heard.
Then it was back to the BGT with that curious burst of energy typical of post-flats, where it’s almost like everyone involved would rather try to forget about it.
In Sandpoint angry clouds called their own bluff and a quick if dense shower started. Stopping under a sheltering evergreen I had some of the Halloween candy I was bringing home for the neighborhood kids who would never show up. The rain squall ended in a few minutes and I started off again in time to witness a lovely tableau of scudding clouds (there, I’ve just established I’m okay with ‘scudding’ at least for this blog) with a superimposed rainbow arc, and a ragged flight of crows flying laterally across the BGT, in the direction of the rainbow. A woman walker coming my way saw me taking lots of looks upward and then she stopped to watch the same sight.
Another long week, another flat tire, and yet this was one of those moments where everything coalesced to cause one of those perfect, unbidden bike-riding smiles.