We’re all insane

This past Saturday morning, the boys and I decided to take a bike ride to Baldwin Park. It’s a long trip, about thirteen miles each way, but it’s all on bike paths and we were in the mood for an adventure.

Adventures being what they are, we didn’t end up at Baldwin Park. Instead, we rode three miles past it, to the Fashion Square Mall. I hadn’t been there in about ten years, and the boys had never been. We wandered the mall, had lunch at the food court, and checked out a comic book store.

Then, as we were walking back to the bikes, the skies opened up and rain poured down. We retreated back into the mall.

“So. . .” I said. “This is going to be rough.” We were fifteen miles from home, with no rain gear of any sort.

The boys laughed.

“Phones in Ziploc’s,” I said. For some reason, I had thought to bring Ziploc baggies but not rain jackets.

“Are we really going out in that?” my youngest asked.

The rain was falling in blinding sheets, so heavy that visibility had to be measured in feet instead of yards.

“Not much choice,” I said. “Mom’s in Daytona. Even if we could reach her, she wouldn’t be here for at least two hours.”

“At least there’s no lightning,” my oldest son said. “Then we’d be stuck here.”

We strode into the deluge, unlocked our bikes, and put on our helmets.

“We walk the bikes until we’re out of the parking lot,” I shouted over the rain. “Stay close. When we start to ride, be careful with your brakes. They probably won’t work.”

Fortunately, the parking lot was mostly empty of traffic. We jogged our bikes to the trail, then mounted up and started riding.

About a mile later, the thunder and lightning arrived, making the kind of dramatic entrance that only thunder and lightning can.

There was nothing to do but ride. There were no shelters or buildings around, just fifteen miles of trail stretching ahead of us. We could have turned back to the mall, but I didn’t want to go back into that big empty parking lot. The trail, at least, had tree cover, and the trees were substantially taller than us.

“You guys okay?” I shouted back.

My youngest son laughed and started singing:

“We are insane.
We are insane.
Riding metal objects
in the thunder and rain”

“We’re on rubber tires,” I pointed out feebly.

His brother laughed and joined in, adding an echo to each line:

“We are insane.    (we are insane)
We are insane.    (we are insane)
Riding metal objects    (riding metal objects)
In the thunder and rain.
In the thunder and ra-ain!”

“Okay then.”

“We need another verse,” they said.

What else could I do? I joined in. Soon, we had a song for three voices: one lead, one echo, and one person doing the beat and background music.  The last line, of course, is sung together, long and drawn out, with jazz hands (if you’re not riding a bicycle through a Florida downpour).

“We are insane.    (we are insane)
We are insane.    (we are insane)
Riding metal objects    (riding metal objects)
In the thunder and rain.   In the thunder and ra-ain!

We are insane. (we are insane)
We’d be safer on a train. (we’d be safer on a train!)
But we’re riding our bikes. (yes riding our bikes)
in the thunder and rain.
In the thunder and rain!”

… cause that’s how we roll.

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