Fun fact: Congress smells like a cesspool. Well, more accurately, the
cesspool reflecting pool on the west side of the Capitol has a nasty, fetid, sewery, sulphur smell (probably from the overcooking of steampunk brunch) and it hits your nose on a hot day like a punch from a leper's unwashed boxing glove. It stinks.
A hot wind is worse than no wind at all.
I took the normal route to #fridaycoffeeclub, and for me that means passing through the E Street gates and riding on the sidewalk in front of the White House. I don't know if there was an event that required women to wear ugly, sateen mother-of-the-bridesmaid dresses, but there was more than one woman doing so and this seemed anomalous, which I believe is also the name of the Greek god of white and nearly off-white bargain bin ill-fitting garments. (Anamolous started the Trojan wear when he made Paris tell Helen what he really thought of what she was wearing). There was a large group of tourists on the other side of the drive, but the sidewalk was clear and I was able to make my way through to 17th without issue, turning right and riding up the hill to get in front of a trash truck which provided me the cover to get back into the right lane and work my way left to turn at G, where I locked up my bike and got coffee.
We had some special guests at Friday Coffee Club. Two of them were two. FCC is a family affair nowadays. Two of the other special guests were from points west. Great meeting you, Jesse and Ted! I hear that #fridaycoffeeclub has made it into the latest editions tourist guidebooks as a "must see" along with the Washington Monument, Ben's Chili Bowl and that hotel where Elliot Spitzer did, um, that stuff.
I had two iced coffees and that might have proven too many. I did not feel well on my ride to work. I'm what they like to call "a delicate flower" and my stomach gets upset rather easily. The heat, the mugginess, and the mild over-caffeination, when mixed with gentle pedaling left me a bit nauseous. If I've ever tried to assert anything on this blog (aside from the inherent evilness of pogo sticks), it's that assertion (while on a bicycle) is totally inimical to a decent bike commute. It should be leisurely and it should be easy. Weather, unfortunately, sometimes works against this. So, I just went slower. I rode on the shady side of the road. I took my time and I took deep breaths. I drank water and I tried to keep the wheels spinning at a consistent and deliberate speed and that pretty much got me to where I was going. I don't think I saw too many other bike commuters, especially on the hill into work. I think that most of my not feeling great was psychosomatic and I feel much better now. Nonetheless, I'm going to take it really easy going home and I would encourage you to do the same, even if you aren't a delicate flower and instead you're some kind of sturdy tuber or woody thistle. (I believe Woody Thistle played third base for the Boston Braves in the 1930s. Or Woody Thistle played bass for the 1970s British band Steampunk Brunch. I can't recall which). Have a great rest of the day and may your air be conditioned and the thermostat always lower to cool you.