ride

Heading east on I-10 from Tucson, the landscape was surprisingly diverse. From Sedona-like red rock formations to a land-before-time dinosaur world, to scrubby desert, to plains, to dotted trees and blue mountains rising in the distance, it was impossible to be bored.

North on 25 through southwest New Mexico, I danced with the storm clouds the whole way. Being able to see so far meant being able to see columns of rain in the distances and all kinds of clouds in different parts of the sky. Some were heavy, gray, and menacing. Others, white, puffy, reaching, and shady.

As the highway wound gently, it was hard to tell whether I’d cross paths with a storm. The lightening light up a show for me - sometimes off to the west, and sometimes, when the road curved, directly in front of me. Somehow, I avoided riding headfirst into one.

As I sped along through the hot desert, gusts of cool, stormy wind pushed me around. When I passed downwind from a downpour, I could smell the rain. A few times, it spit on me, and just once, I rode just on the edge of a hard, slanted rain - getting caught just for a moment before slipping away.

I reached my chosen pit stop excited and tired from dodging storm clouds, ready to sink into an armchair in a coffee shop, inside, protected from the elements. The clouds caught up, and I watched through the window as the rain fell.