Man oh man do I ever love riding my bike at night. The streets are empty and the world feels like your oyster. The fact that bikes are silent makes you feel like a panther slithering through the jungle in pursuit of prey. You swoop down hills, taking the whole lane to yourself. And what is it about the way the air seems to change at night? Different feel, different smell. It's what it must feel like to be Batman.
As most of you have probably figured out by now, I'm what could be called an urban or street cyclist. Most of my time on a bike is spent buzzing around town, whether it be for fun or for more productive ends. I ride in all my clothes, at all times of day, to just about every type of destination. So every time I see the user manual for a bicycle and it advises that cycling after dark is very dangerous and one should never do it, I am torn between sadness and laughter. After all, for cycling to be a viable method of transportation, you need to be able to get where you need to go whether that's at noon or midnight.
One thing though - there is no time like the night time when good lights and a really solid lock (or two) is necessary. As much as the cover of darkness makes me feel like the Caped Crusader, it's also really good for concealing shady activities, like, yknow, bike theft. And lights will keep you alive.
So ride off into the night. Feel the night air blowing through your hair. Be the bat.