Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Bike Ride

During finals, when I was stressed out and looking forward to summer, I mentally planned all the things I wanted to do.

With all the imagined free time, I thought that I would drive around the countryside, photographing sunsets and anything else I found. When summer came, I realized how easy it was to allow small things to complicate what I wanted to do.

Where would I drive? It was hard to watch for photographic opportunities and drive at the same time. I found many reasons that kept me from just driving.

And then I started to ride my bike.

To begin with I stayed around my neighborhood, winding through the small streets. It was interesting but I wanted something different. I wanted to bike out toward our field-- the one on the outskirts of town where I took light trail photos.

However, to get there I would have to traverse a huge-slightly busy-no-shoulder overpass. Then I would be on a winding road that had no shoulder, where people just sped through the curves. Not very appealing.

Then, last night as I was riding around I hoped on a road on a whim, just to see where it would lead.

It lead me to the countryside. When I caught my first glimpse of the fields that lay outside of town I flashed back to my dreaming during finals. This is what I had wanted. It was peaceful out here, not many cars to contend with. Wishing I had brought my camera, I pulled out my iPhone and started to take some pictures.

How perfect is this? This was a little side road that ran alongside the cemetery. Fun fact of the day; my city is apparently surrounded by like ten cemeteries. Who knew?

The lighting was hard for my camera to compensate for. If I had my actual camera I might have had better results. Still, I liked the ones I was able to come up with ;) Just as a side note, no I had no clue who any other these people in the cemetery were.

Stranger by the roadside do not weep when you see my grave/For I am not dead, merely asleep

 I'm just the odd person who finds cemeteries intriguing. There are so many stories buried here. Some of the gravestones are so old and weathered I can't make out the names or dates. The guy here was born 1875.

1875! Imagine! I wondered what my town looked like back then-- probably not like much at all! Just a dusty main street and farms. In 1905 we had the hottest summer on record. Poor William here probably was here to witness it. There would have been no air conditioning, no respite from the humid heat. He would have been thirty then. Probably married, with some kids. I wonder if he was a farmer, his fate resting on the whims of nature. I wonder what he looked like. Was he even born here? All I know is that he died here-- or at least, his family buried him here.

But I'll never know anything more than when he was born, died, and who he married. There was some inscription between his and his wife's name but I didn't get a picture of it. 

I took a little break here, seven miles in my ride. I had just reached the top of a steep hill, and paused to catch my breath. While the Weather Channel said it felt like 100, I didn't notice the heat. When you're riding a bike, there is a constant breeze, and patches of shade to ride through.

The ride ended up being 10.5 miles long. It took like seven miles to get to the countryside but only like three to get back home because I found a more direct route.

Anyway! I have fallen into a routine of biking every day and next time I'll have to bring my actual camera.

Tomorrow is the fourth of July! My brother is coming home-- I haven't seen him since January, he's been studying abroad in Spain, so I'm excited to see him :)

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