Today was chilly, windy, and threatening rain. A perfect day for a bike ride. There's a winding country road behind the apartment complex in which we lived before moving out to our ranch. It skirts a shooting range, runs through some McMansions, and then heads out to farm and ranch country, up past a stable to a ranch with a pond that usually (but not today) hosts a great blue heron, sweeps down at nearly 40 mph to a valley floor, climbs past a small herd of bison and then past a barn with an enormous Washington State University cougar mascot painted on it, heads left past a fire station and starts another climb past an archery range, a flock of Barbados sheep ($1.00 to feed the sheep), and up past a horse ranch, farms, and finally a dead end.
The climb up was mostly into or across the wind. I kept the bike in a small gear, trying to keep my cadence up, eating every 30 minutes to keep my blood glucose levels up (I've been a Type 1 diabetic for nearly a year after having surgery for pancreatic cancer).
On the way back, I had a tailwind/crosswind and made the most of it. I started the long, steep climb in a small gear and spun most of the way up, finishing the climb out of the saddle. Midway back, the rain came, but it was a soft, misty rain. I felt as if I was cycling in the British midlands.
During the ride, I saw two other riders, passing me in the direction from which I'd come. Brothers of the bike. Riders in the rain.