Despite the gail force winds today I decided to go for a ride before work. I rode north into town and started a loop along the levee that goes all the way around Marysville. I didn't know how fast I was going because my bike-computer is still broken (I really need to get a new one). When I got to the point where the direction goes from north-west to south, I realized just how swiftly the wind was moving. To that point I'd been moving mostly with the wind. I also realized that I had 15 minutes to be at work and a long way to go, and into a stiff headwind. I cursed, shifted up and hammered on the pedals. Normally I wouldn't worry about being a couple minutes late but the head-honchos were supposed to be in town and they are intense. Riding in the drops, I whizzed along the levee; sweating, swaying and leaving the occasional hobo mystified. As I approached one of the three railroad crossings on this particular stretch I thought about blowing through without stopping, but there have been a few people hit by trains in the area recently and I didn't want to join them. I slowed down enough to see around the hill that was blocking my view and sure enough, there was a train, not 20 yards away. I hadn't even heard it in my haste (and Simon & Garfunkel's "Bleeker Street" playing through my ipod didn't help). I had plenty of room so I crossed, but when the train whizzed past me seconds later I thought about how stupid it would be to get hit by a train. My lungs and throat burning I continued on my way; under the 5th street bridge, then the 10th, down a ramp to the river-bottoms, into the gravel to avoid a shady-looking character leaning against his car which was parked on the bike-specific trail and then up over the levee again. Round a couple corners and there was work, complete with company car in parking lot and with one minute to spare. I locked the bike up, grabbed my panniers and ran in the back door. No boss. He was at lunch. AND I still had five minutes by the work clock. So I sat in the bathroom and drank ice-water until I could quit panting like a dog. And changed. And wished I didn't have a heart-shaped sweat-mark on my butt. On my way home my legs felt like sandbags and I was still fighting a headwind, but at least it was cool out. At least I'll sleep well tonight. Today made me feel like this guy.