I noticed great crowds of seabirds and crows far up the Ballona Creek channel, and before I could finish wondering what they were doing there, when all the really good eating for birdfolk is at the shore, I ran into the heavy fogbank pictured here.
It was beautiful; distant sounds absorbed and near ones standing out with unforced clarity, the cold seeping seductively through layers of wool and cotton, the ocean splashing lazily under the bridge. Riders materializing out of the thick gray mist and vanishing away without a word. Sweet, quiet, rare....
A couple of miles back towards home and I was out of the fog, literally and mentally. By the time I came to the truss bridge before Overland, the sun was brilliant again. A stop at Samosa House East for some really very fine curries sounded the perfect grace note to a lazy ride.
Back on the streets now--after the sojourn down the creekside bike path--I watched the shoppers crowd and shuffle nervously in giant cars, edging between lanes and into gutters, getting jammed against the curb, all in a strange sort of nervous slow motion that made it more pathetic than threatening. This frenzy of consumption, accompanied by often startling anger expressed through horn, fist, and shouts among maddened motorists, always puzzles me, seeing that it is claimed to be a celebration of a prophet who repeatedly stressed the themes of nonviolence and voluntary poverty.
Nevertheless, I was out of it; I'll celebrate the Solstice--the real geophysical event that all religions celebrate under different names this time of year--and I'll give a gift to wife Gina and son Jack, because social habits are even harder to break than personal ones, and hearts are all too easy to break, especially at holiday time. I was out of it also because the bicycle teaches calm--the energy you expend is blatantly your own, and you can go only so fast, and it's so pleasant to go slower. And you never ever get stuck in traffic jams!
Now we're off again, into an almost warm and very sweet fall evening, on the bikes. I'm looking forward to it.