Posted in Air, Cycling, Earth, Eastern Shore, Exploring, Fire, Gifts, Gratitude, Maryland, Mindfulness, Nature, Photography, Portals & Pathways, Quotes, Spirit, Summer

Early morning bicycle ride

Dewy morning in the meadow.
Dewy morning in the meadow.

Mindfulness is about being fully awake in our lives.  It is about perceiving the exquisite vividness of each moment.  We also gain immediate access to our own powerful inner resources for insight, transformation, and healing.

~ Jon Kabat-Zinn

A little seedy.
A little seedy.

This morning at sunrise it was dewy with ground fog stretching horizontally throughout the meadows.  The fog and the blooms of the mallows are signaling that autumn isn’t too far off, but the heat and steaminess are pure summer.

Morning blush.
Morning blush.

Knowing it wasn’t going to get any cooler, I took off early on my bike for a short (7.4 miles) ride around the neighborhood.  It’s not really a neighborhood, of course, because I live in The Middle of Nowhere and while there are houses dotted here and there, mostly the roads wind their way past woods, meadows, marshes, and farm fields where the corn and soybeans are nearing their harvest time.

Passing through the cornfields.
Passing through the cornfields.

In one of last week’s postcards (this one), I mentioned sitting on the dock and watching a crop duster fly by.  I didn’t see the crop duster today, but I did go past the fields that were being dusted last week.

Taken last Thursday while I was sitting on the dock.
Taken last Thursday while I was sitting on the dock.

The roads here are lined with ditches, and the ditches are currently lined with mallows in bloom.  You might know them as hibiscus or marshmallow or any of a bunch of other names.  There are big blooms and small blooms, pink blooms and white blooms.

Pretty little pink blooms growing in a ditch.
Pretty little pink blooms growing in a ditch.

The same ditches are lined with daylilies during the early summer months.  In the spring, it is usually along the top of the ditches that I find the first spring wildflowers blooming.

I was surprised to see a magnolia still blooming. Did you know magnolias were around before bees? One theory is that they evolved to encourage beetles to pollinate them.
Magnolia still in bloom.

I was surprised to see a magnolia still in bloom. Did you know magnolias were around before bees? One theory is that they evolved to encourage beetles to pollinate them.  Perhaps that explains the thick, tough leaves.

A light in the tree.
A light in the tree.

This particular magnolia is one of the largest magnolia trees I’ve ever seen.  It is located just past the cornfields pictured above, in a wooded area off to the right.

A wooded area just past the magnolia tree.
A wooded area just past the magnolia tree.

I like passing through the wooded areas where the trees almost form an arch over the road, and shade me from the harsh August sun.  After pedaling past the fields where the heat can be almost overwhelming, entering the shadiness of the woods is like stepping into an air conditioned room.

A friend asked why I’d think such a hot and steamy day was a good day for a bike ride.  Normally I avoid exercising in this type of weather, but a bicycle is a good way to get some exercise when it’s hot because you carry your own breeze with you.  Mother Nature provided a breeze off the water, too, so it wasn’t truly awful, but I did drink most of the water I carried with me.  It is important to stay hydrated when out and about in the heat.

On the roadside. I forget what these are, but I bet someone reading knows.
On the roadside. I forget what these are, but I bet someone reading knows.

I didn’t take a lot of photos.  Just a few so I could bring back some flowers.  There were many other things besides flowers (and crops and woods) to see.  Indigo Buntings flying over the cornstalks.  Crabs painted on the roads for the cyclists that enter the Soft Shell Metric Century held in the spring.  A big splash of the paint used for the crabs in the middle of the road where someone must have spilled it.  Laughing Gulls flying over the creek.  People fishing on the bridge that goes over the creek.  A wild turkey crossing the road.  (Doesn’t that make you want to ask, “Why did the turkey cross the road?”  The answer, of course, is that it was the chicken’s day off!)

Curves.
Curves.

Thank you for joining me on another bike ride.  As I mentioned earlier, it was short.  I’m glad I got out there before the worst of today’s heat arrived.

On the road.
On the road.

Be good, be kind, be loving.  Just Be.  🙂

One of the garden morning glories. Just because.
One of the garden morning glories. Just because.

Today’s joys:  An early morning bike ride; time to stop and look at the flowers; the perfume of the dried lavender I picked from my garden and put in the guest room; an interesting morning meditation; picking up two books from the library and the anticipation that comes with wanting to read them.

 

 

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Author:

Robin is a photographer, artist, writer, wife, sometime poet, mom, grandma, daughter, sister, friend, and occasional traveler currently living on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. She finished a 365 commitment to get outside every day in 2011, and has turned it into a lifelong commitment taking one or more walks each day. Robin will continue to share her walks through her words and images on Breezes at Dawn. Older posts can be found at Life in the Bogs, her previous blog. Robin and her husband are in the midst of renovating the house and property they refer to as the Wabi-Sabi Ranch, 35 acres that include marsh, a dock on a tidal creek, meadows, and woodlands. Every day brings new discoveries.

28 thoughts on “Early morning bicycle ride

  1. What a beautiful post, Robin. Thanks for taking us on your bike ride. I’d do the same but my tire is mysteriously dead after my son used it…been procrastinating over fixing it or ditching it (not in the best of shape)

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  2. I’m sitting here watching my mid-section spread as I read about your “short” bike ride. Uh huh. I did walk about half a mile today. I gave myself a silver star for that.

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    1. It is an amazing shade of blue, David, and although they are small, they really stand out. I sometimes think about making up my own names for flowers and trees, but I’m afraid I wouldn’t do much better with that than I do making up names for people on my blog. I wind up using their first initial and if I’m telling a story involving more than one person, I end up with alphabet soup.

      That said/written, Minjonet would be a good name for this flower since it is a French name meaning “little blue flower.” I often talk to the flowers so when I see this flower today I will greet it with “good morning, Minjonet” and see how it feels about the name. It will probably think I’m crazy. 🙂

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  3. My shoes are now a little wet from the morning dew, but that’s OK because you captured it well. Large Magnolia trees are so stunning! I had never seen them around here that large, so the first I time I saw one was in Virginia … and simply a wow moment.

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  4. 7+ miles is not a short bike ride, a short bike ride is down to the end of my street and back…under 1 mile. Which is still more than I’ve ridden this summer. Thanks for taking us along! By the way, someone up here has a last magnolia blossom too, and posted about it on FB yesterday. I didn’t know they bloomed so late in the season.

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    1. You’re welcome, Dawn. And thanks for coming along. 🙂 7+ miles is short compared to what some of my friends and family manage to do. My youngest brother rode close to 60 miles on Sunday. That makes my 7+ miles look pretty short.

      I didn’t know magnolias bloomed so late, either. We have some in the woods. The flowers were finished a while ago, and the cones have formed.

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  5. I agree that a bicycle ride is the perfect thing to do on a hot day, because of the breeze you create for yourself while riding. I would love going from the sun into those woodsy tunnels. 🙂

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  6. Very much enjoyed the bike ride! You make me want to tune mine up and find a nice place to ride. The steamy heat has finally arrived here too, but I’m not gonna complain because the summer will disappear too quickly – though the calendar says we still have another month of it, it just won’t be the same once school starts again.

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  7. It has been hot and early in the day, too. I admire your get-up-and-go! Thanks for sharing some of the beautiful things along the way. The magnolia shot in the sun fleck is stunning! Little blue flower is a spiderwort relative called Asian dayflower (Commenlina communis). I have a few that show up in my daylily bed. Even though they can be invasive, I let them be because I love that true blue!

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    1. You’re welcome, Eliza, and thanks for riding along. We have a few Asian dayflowers here on the ranch, too. We’ve cleared some of them out, but left some behind for the same reason you leave them be. The blue is so beautiful. 🙂

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  8. I had the discussion only the other day with one of my daughters about exercising in the heat, as she had taken up a months trial of heat yoga. They heat up the room to 40 C in which to do yoga, and as my daughter doesn’t mind the heat, it didn’t bother her at all. (She won’t be continuing the classes though, saying she thought yoga was boring!) We concluded that there’s a difference between choosing to make yourself hot, knowing that you can cool after the exercise, and being just plain old hot, all day and night, due to hot weather.

    Love the flowers you found along the way. A magnolia tree is on my wish-list for my front garden, and no, I didn’t realise that magnolias were here before bees! A very interesting fact, Robin. 🙂

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Comments are delightful and always appreciated. I will respond when I can (life is keeping me busy!), and/or come around to visit you at your place soon. Thank you!

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