Pedalling with Hannah in the wind by Lake Marie
Here's Hannah Arendt finding words for my experience of riding a bicycle. Arendt is talking about air travel, but the insight transfers nicely enough:
"[A]ny decrease of terrestrial distance can be won only at the price of putting a decisive distance between man and earth, of alienating man from his immediate earthly surroundings."I tried an Arendtian experiment this afternoon, recording my trip, first on bike, then in car, along our front street and down 91 Avenue toward Andy's IGA. It's a windy day today. The wind brings back Heidegger's insight that wind is always wind-in-the-trees, which, as far as it has been given to me to understand, means that existence is mediated for human beings. We don't get it pure. It's a quick jump from Heidegger to John Prine who knows about the wind, too. For Prine, it's not just the wind, either.
Many years later I found myself talking to this girl
Who was standing there with her back turned to Lake Marie
The wind was blowing, especially through her hair.
The wind is bike-riding weather for me. I enjoy talking back to the gusts through the teeth of my gears. At this time of year, I listen for leaves scraping across the asphalt. Today, I watched myself listening to what could be heard, or not, from seat versus saddle. Here are my edited findings: