Don’t Blow Things Off

It’s the time of year when, due to the changing ocean and air temperatures, the winds pick up. While windmill owners and kite flyers may rejoice, not everyone is a happy camper. Some people get freaked out, cyclists get slowed down while pedaling into the wind (and get a tail wind on the way back,) hairstyles are blown agroof and pollinators are successful in spreading their seed.

I am not particularly bothered by the wind. I sometimes wonder if it is because of the sheer number of things that are come at me on any given day, that cause me to not have time to be bothered by much. If I got bothered by all the things that could, I might just implode.

The announcement about the KWMR call in talk show “Let’s Talk” caught my attention. On Thursday at 11am they are going to talk about bicyclists. I guess they want to get some calls. I think cyclists might annoy people even more than the wind! As both an avid cyclist, as well as a motorist, a few things come to mind.

Riding my bike!  Photo: Mike Varley

The first involves getting places on time. You know what? You are either going to get there, or you aren’t. If you race and speed to get somewhere, you may get there, you may get a ticket, you may crash your car, you may harm someone, or yourself. I am not often late, but when I am, it always seems to work out. The alternative to taking my time and getting there safely, could be deadly. Regardless if there is one cyclists, or fifty, it is just not worth putting anyone’s life at risk. Sure it is frustrating, but we are all people, brothers, sisters, mothers, fathers, etc.

The second is about the cyclists that you don’t remember. As a cyclist I am a defensive driver and I follow the rules of the road. For a time I served as a League Cycling Instructor for the League of American Bicyclists. I have taught hundreds of folks the skills to ride on the roads. There are a few things that you can do as a cyclist to reduce the likelihood of getting run over. I believe that pruning an apple tree is statistically more dangerous that riding my bicycle on the roads of West Marin. If I am riding in a predictable manner, riding as far to the right as practicable¬†, you should not even remember passing me. We shared the road.

We ran a Bed and Breakfast for 12 years and had over 1000 guests during that time. I don’t remember them all. Sometimes even if folks return, I don’t recall our enchanting exchange over breakfast, but we remember the difficult customers and the unstable characters. Yep, there were probably about 5 in 12 years, but they really made in impression on us. Good thing we didn’t greet every potential guest based on the representation of 5 out of 1226.4 people’s behavior!

How about an old Irish blessing:

May the road rise up to meet you.
May the wind always be at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
and rains fall soft upon your fields.
And until we meet again,
May God hold you in the palm of His hand.

See you on the roadways! Pick whatever god you want.

Amanda Eichstaedt
KWMR Station Manager and Executive Director

p.s. Agroof is a word, at least to me.