The Politics of the Trail

I hate to see July go, though August is beautiful and slightly fallish already: I’ve seen a few crumpled brown leaves, the sumac is red, and the light is softer.

And yet I’ve been on the trail less this year than ever.

This agoraphobia must end, I decided. And so I went out on my bike with a pannier full of water bottles, banana, book, sanitizer, and wipes. Most people are slightly apprehensive, but you can’t wear a mask on a bicycle, or at least I can’t, because I need to breathe deeply. I have been known to try to hold my breath when I pass someone. Now how would that help? I do have a buff, a stretchy scarf you put around your neck and  can pull up over your face if someone looks particularly germy.  (I’m psychic!)

Most trails are wide enough that you can pass people easily, but some people hog the trail, and on one narrow section I turned around and backtracked because a group was spilling all over the place and walking toward me.

The politics of the trail!

I sat down for a snack, but the banana had popped in the pannier. I drank the  water as I read  Marie-Helene Bertino’s experimental novel, Parakeet. In the first chapter, a parakeet flaps around the narrator’s hotel room. Turns out she’s the narrator’s grandmother, trying to warn her against getting married!

Intriguing, yes? But soon it was time to go back and navigate the Covid-19 crowd.

Covid-19 is political:  we knew it, but you can see it more by the behavior on the trails.