Thursday, February 7, 2013

La Lluvia, Mi Bici y Yo (The Rain, My Bike and Me)

We get spoiled in Tulum.  The weather, most days, is sunny, blue skies and hot.  Most days.  You do, however, get a few days in a row where it rains, or it threatens rain, it's windy and chilly.  Honestly,  I don't mind those days.  It's a gentle reminder that nothing is perfect.  I sign on to Skype, I read and write, I attempt to memorize Spanish that I've learned and I continue to procrastinate writing emails.  However, here's a little secret I know; I realized on the days that it's threatening rain, it's best then to bike to the beach, if only briefly, before the onslaught of drops from the sky.

I've always loved biking and it's become a daily activity for me here.  I bought a crappy little bike, with no gears and the brakes hardly work but it gets me from A to B.  It's a small frame, a bike made for an 11 year old girl so when I ride on it I feel like a giant, which is a rare occurrence for me.  The chain is incredibly greasy so whenever I ride the bike, I have the telltale chain marks on my right calf.  But the bike does a body good.  It's my jam, everyday, it's my sidekick, my plus one.  No complicated feelings in this relationship, just pure nirvana.

A different day from the day I am writing
about but you get the idea....
After several dreary days here where I mostly sat around in the hostel I'm now living in (I moved from my treehouse to a hostel for a plethora of reasons and it's so much fun as a temporary living situation), I got up one morning and figured I'd go to the beach come rain or shine.  The sky was threatening, the wind was picking up but I didn't care.  What the worse that can happen?  I get caught in a downpour?  That's a welcome in the humidity here.  (The humidity alone is worth dedicating a blog post to, how curly my hair has become, how rusty my bike is, how a part my Leatherman knife literally disintegrated in my hand while I was using the pliers awhile ago and I stared in disbelief at the crumbling bits).

Anyhow, back to my bike.  Just me and some handle bars in front of me, peddling my sweaty way through damp air to get to the beach in hopes that I can sit awhile before the downpour.  The thing about Tulum is, it can be sunny and gorgeous in town and pouring at the beach or vice versa.  Micro climates abound, so don't assume it's shit weather at the beach if it's shit weather in town.  I got to the beach early, maybe around 9 AM.  There was almost no one else around.  It was gorgeous, stunning.  There wasn't a smidge of sunlight but the grey and black polychrome sky from above my head to the horizon line was enough to catch your breath in your throat.  I could see way off on the horizon several rain storms scattered.  Veils of rain that look diaphanous from  afar but are certainly not once they hit you.

I stood on the soft, white sand, closed my finger to my thumb and squinted through the hole it made so that the only vision I had beyond my own hand was incandescent ocean and dramatic sky.  All I could think was, "remember this view, remember these colors."  I stripped down to my bathing suit and waded into the crazy turquoise water.  It's funny, when it's not sunny at all, the color of the water is of an intensity on a completely different level.  It's almost as though, when it's brilliantly sunny, that brightness takes away from the intensity of the ocean so that when it's seriously overcast, the water truly shines in a different way.  I hummed to myself as I made my way into the water.  The ocean enveloped me in it's salty arms and I floated on my back.  I was awestruck by the juxtaposition of green water and black sky.  If I floated just right on the backside of a wave with an oncoming wave in front of me, there was a thick line of gossamer green and then a distinct line of black and grey sky and that was all I could see.  I tried to float like that as long as I could with only the view of the wave in front of me and the sky above the wave.  The view, the colors, the experience was something I've never seen or had before and I wanted to capture it as long as I could.  I stayed at the beach until I couldn't take the wind any longer.  Little grains of sand pummeling the pages in my book, disabling me from concentrating on reading

I did get caught in the rain on my bike ride home.  It poured on me.  I just laughed, squinted my eyes and rode on.   

Catching the sunset one night

My skin has become a completely different color these days.
I've even got a decent collection of freckles at this point.

Aaaaand, I just can't help but post photos of Ash's baby, Calai.
I introduced him to the full moon this past month with this Billy Collins
poem in my head, and here, I'm introducing him to being lulled to sleep by
the sound of the worked.

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