Saturday, June 7, 2008

Steam Bath

Low clouds and fog soaked the air this morning as I rode up to Northampton for a coffee and paper. It was a fine ride; the passing countryside is lush with summer greenery right now, and enhanced all the more by sultry humidity:

I know it's not officially summer yet, but come on...

The high humidity primed the air for a steam bath later in the day. Things began to heat up by late morning, when the sun broke through the cloud cover.

I settled in under the shade of the Town Hall, along with some other loungers.

Across the street, this police officer scanned for ne'er-do-wells, under the shade of a Locust tree.

A little past noon I was gathered up and heading out of town, when I noticed people forming along the edge of the street; some setting up cameras. Then a colorful mass of people began approaching from beyond the railroad bridge. I remembered reading that a Transgender Parade was scheduled for today. The transgender community had marched in the recent Northampton Pride parade, but felt they needed their own parade to stress their battle for acceptance and equality, on the level bestowed to the gay and lesbian community in Massachusetts. I pulled over to watch.

They seemed to have an affinity for math symbols.

Not having seen the Northampton Pride parade, I don't have anything to compare this one to. But there was a very large number of people in this march. Several groups chanted slogans in unison, like "Trans genders are under attack; what do we do?"..."Unite, and fight back!". Many people on the sidewalks clapped and cheered them on in support. Here's a quick scan of the scene:

I got back home, and like many, panted through the sticky blast furnace that was Saturday afternoon. Perhaps even more so, as I was on call and had to go to work fixing air conditioners for others. The clouds that developed later on were a welcome sight though, blotting out some of the source of the tropic-like heat.

The sun broke through again though, for the last laugh...

Red sky at night...

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