August 14, 2020

A Tiny Celebration by Craig Mod

Craig Mod makes a twilight bike ride come to life in his Ridgeline newsletter. I highly recommend you subscribe.

The river runs from Fujisawa to Enoshima and on the return trip, the Enoshima lighthouse acts appropriately as a beacon in the distance. The other night, the moon fought through hazy cloud cover, and the river water looked stage-lit. There’s a path along that river that runs for miles and miles. At 10 PM it’s empty. Just me, on my orange bike, total silence, floating through the soup that is the air of August in Japan, air that even at 10 PM is as soupy as you can imagine, more soupy than even in the afternoon since the humidity rises at night. My bike has a beautiful little German-engineered light and dynamo hub on the front wheel. Totally silent in operation. It lights the path (which is otherwise unlit). The river glints. My presence is nothing more than a gentle rubber-on-cement hum. Every now and then a fish flies up and out of the water, splashes back down with a thud. Bridges bisect the river at various intervals and one of them carries the Enoden, a small local train, and as you hover alongside the river, the fishes flopping, the air like soup, the lighthouse marking the way in the distance, every now and then a train will trundle past downriver and you’ll catch a quick glimpse of a few heads, yellow-lit from within, and the rough reflection of the cars in the water.

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