Rain in Arad

Nicholas Carman1 4423

I am standing in the bathroom at the coffee shop in Arad, looking in the mirror and crying. For all those people that have told me I couldn’t do the things that I set out to do– I can. For all those people that tell me I didn’t do the things I’ve done, that I’m lying– I’m not. For all the people that are told you’re not strong enough– you are. At least you can try. There is nothing shameful in trying. This race is not about winning. This race is about riding my heart out because I can. I wash my face in the sink. The restart of the HLC is in two hours.

Wind rushes past strip malls. Dark blue grey clouds threaten.

We meet in the center of Arad at noon. It starts raining. In Israel, rain makes impassable mud. The mud cakes onto tires. Soon, tires no longer roll. Soon, I have to carry my bike. Soon, I can hardly lift my feet and bike at the same time because they’re so heavy with mud. Forward progress is slow and exhausting.

We delay for half an hour. Niv, the strongest rider of the group, shivers with cold. Limor warns us not to cross flooding rivers.

What do we do if we encounter a flooded river? asks Ingo.

Just wait it out, replies Ilan Tevet.

I step away, into a pharmacy and out of earshot. I crossed a flooding river yesterday on my way to Daliyat al-Karmel. The current swept me off my feet and pulled my bike away. I have already voiced my concern about restarting in the rain.  


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9 thoughts on “Rain in Arad

  1. joecruz says:

    I love this, Lael.

  2. nthn says:

    Not always just smiles and sandwiches.

    Thanks for writing this down and sharing it.

  3. I love riding in the rain It is so great when you stop get out of the rain and get warm again
    Charles Nighbor

  4. Crying in rain is great has no one notices the increase in the water running down your face

  5. Joan Nugent says:

    Oh Lael…..thank you for sharing some of the raw emotion that you experienced. Well written account of the parts that none of us see or imagine. You are one very special young woman.

  6. HI Lael
    Having followed your cycling adventures with Nick over the last few years I had not doubt you could do it! Well done, extraordinary! Pitty about the rain you made such a great start it must have been disappointing and difficult as you say to restart.
    Best Andrew

  7. Casey Jones says:

    You lift me up and inspire me. Like a true hero. Thanks Lael.

  8. David Kadouch says:

    Hi lael
    We met Saturday evening, I’m riding the cross Israel ride with Limor. We spoke about riding in Europe and Egypt. Just wanted to let you know that I like your writing. It’s authentic person and truly inspiring. Hope to see you and Nicholas again in Israel someday

  9. Ronnie says:

    but you did so well – Brava!

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