This week was a good one for winter mileage. Unsurprising given the relatively balmy, soaring temperatures we've seen this week. As I write this it's some degrees below zero, but earlier in the week temperatures approached 30˚ and it was beautiful and clear. The snow was a little sticky, as you can see in the following photo of a fender "snow tongue", but overall conditions were wonderful and I found myself humming "Yankee Doodle Dandy"* as I rolled along.
Since getting my new fixed-gear wheel for the orange bike, I've enjoyed the workout and the simplicity of fixie riding. It seems to work better in the snow and has thrown into high relief just how out of shape I've gotten this winter. The gearing, to put it mildly, is not high (42/20) but I find my ass well and thoroughly kicked pretty often. Still, no hills have turned me into a pedestrian, so I'm going to get a new cog soon to up the exercise ante.
The world I live in tends to be a pretty nice place. I have a wife and kid that I'm crazy about, my job is a good one, and our little family wants for nothing. Still, a sun-drenched winter ride highlights the good and banishes, for a time, the darker thoughts and shadows that lurk in the background of even the most content of human souls.
My friend Jim has stated that he's enjoying the riding very much this winter, even as many normally hardy souls around him are capitulating to the season. I'm with Jim. This has been a hard winter but worth facing head-on and no reason to stay off the bike. Still, that first ride with no sweater or jacket will be very sweet. . .