Spring is finally (finally!) here, meaning that it’s both light enough and dry enough to bike to work again. Here in the Pacific NW I don’t worry about the cold, I just worry about the fine, insidious drizzle that will soak you and sap your will to live if you try to bike through it. But that’s all over now! Mostly! It hailed like hell’s frozen fury this afternoon and was still dripping when I had to ride home, but I took the bus most of the way and was able to tolerate the wet for the last few miles from the bus stop to my house.

In the morning I rode my bike to work the long way, with no bus–fifteen miles, down from my house to the trail along Lake Washington, connecting to the Sammamish River Trail, eight miles along the Sammamish River, and finally leaving the river to climb the hills into Redmond where I work. It’s a long, pleasant ride, mostly through parkland and river valley, past farms and woods and the occasional townhouse monstrosity. Today gave me an abundance of wildlife: two great herons, a plethora of ducks of different species, Canadian geese, a rabbit, a multitude of multicolored snails on the path, the usual assortment of crows, sparrows, robins, and songbirds, and rarest of all, a peregrine falcon carrying a branch for her nest! The peregrine falcon has been one of my favorite birds since elementary school, when I chose to do a report about them and fell in love. For a while, when people asked me what my favorite sport was, I said “falconry”, which tells you volumes about what kind of kid I was. You have to admit, they’re really beautiful birds:

Peregrine Falcon

But I’ve rarely gotten to see one in the wild, so this was a great treat.

(Made up for the grueling uphill in the last two miles to work. Almost murdered me, that hill did.)