What Maps Don't Say About Roads
Is it a stretch to compare roads to types of music? The rhythm of the elevation changes in Northern Ireland is jazz-like, whereas here in New England USA it feels more like classical music. How can you describe jazz to someone who is only familiar with classical? They would have to hear it for themselves.
This is more than about topography. Do roads have style? Can a road be elegant, sophisticated, nuanced? Or perhaps it's a matter of physical presence, of chemistry and rapport between road and rider. Cycling on a road about which you've read on the internet can feel like meeting a person and finding them different from their online profile.
With new roads there will always be an element of surprise, a recalibration of the senses. There are things that maps don't tell us, no matter how good we may be at reading them.