Friday, December 23, 2011

22 Degrees and the Good Deed

While I was out Christmas shopping today the north wind was biting and patches of ice littered the sidewalk. For the most part I avoided the slippery spots. Fortunately I ducked into stores, which deterred the cold.

With helmet on head, gloves, and basket full of goodies filling my arms, I must have been a humorous sight. The cashier rang up my purchases and I paid, suddenly remembering that I'd worn the helmet indoors to redeem the Bicycle Benefits discount. The employee wouldn't honor the decal once I'd paid so I turned to the next person in line and they let me give the 10 percent to a lady with a full shopping crate. Later, while I was outside reattaching my basket, the woman came up to me to hand me a package of cookies as a thank you. I smiled and said, "No thanks. Just pass the favor forward sometime. Have a nice holiday." I hope I made her day.

After buying animal treats at our local pet store and cuddling a rare rodent, a Degu, I went on a roundabout ride for more exercise before heading home. Hardy pedalers on blogs have inspired me to keep out there as darkness and cold descends.

A couple miles later the cold seeped into my shoes and my hands had difficulty retaining heat. There's a fine line between pedaling fast enough to keep the blood moving and staying safe while avoiding the spotty ice. I was miserable. Sadly, I 'd reached my personal limit and turned into the bitter headwind to shortcut my ride. When I got home I realized it was 22 degrees, and with the intense gusts, the windchill must have hovered at 10 degrees. It's no wonder I couldn't stay warm.

I walked over this bridge.
There will be a time when I give up cycling for the remainder of the winter. But that's not always a bad thing. It allows time to re-evaluate my three bikes, peruse and order from bike catalogs, perform much need maintenance, and lurk on Cragslist searching for the next girly bike. I'll also be planning for my 50th birthday adventure with a close friend and another trip with my husband.

1 comment:

  1. Good for you Annie for the good deed and pushing your limits through this cold weather. Last year I rode as much as I could through the winter, but this year like you, I have a more realistic POV to riding. I can't believe you are turning 50. I always tell people that bicycling keeps you forever young.


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