Monday, 7 March 2011

Getting My Groove Back!

Finally, oh finally! Today I felt like myself on my bike again. Not watching my speed. Not watching for black ice. Not getting off every couple of blocks to drag the poor bike across a snowbank or to cross a tricky intersection in order to make a left turn. While Spring has not fully sprung yet, winter is definitely gone and the roads are clear. So what if it's raining and there isn't a green leaf or flower in sight (other than on my tights)? I got my cycling groove back!

Taking it nice and slow on the Gazelle since the snow began to fall in December, I'd almost forgotten how awesome this bicycle feels to ride when I really push it. Though heavy, it accelerates wonderfully and moves fluidly with my body. It is tremendous fun to cycle 17mph on this gorgeous beast - steering with my hips and leaning into turns with abandon - sometimes to the amazed looks of passers-by and fellow cyclists. Oh my 50lb flying machine, how I've missed these good times!

And if you're wondering how I know that I can go 17mph on the Gazelle, it's thanks to the Co-Habitant's computer on his Pashley. Yes, he has computers both on his roadbike and on his transport bike, and when we ride together he likes to inform me of my speed. Although secretly pleased, I dutifully pretend to be annoyed. I mean, come on - a computer on a Pashley Roadster! What's next, bottle cages? Oh wait...

Well, as you can tell, I am in a fine mood. I had not fully realised until now how much cycling this winter had been stressing me out. While I am always vigilant when riding in traffic, the sort of hyper-vigilance the road conditions commanded over the past two months really did a number on my nerves. I guess for me, cycling is both stressful and tedious if I expect to have to execute emergency maneuvers at any moment. I wouldn't make a good bike messenger for sure.

Of course, one downside to the winter ending is that all the thick wool hats I've been making (that our apartment is now littered with) will soon have to be retired until the next cold season - but that is a small price to pay for getting my cycling groove back. It has been weird to keep up Lovely Bicycle for the past couple of months while doing only a minimal amount of cycling, and I felt almost fraudulent to be waxing lyrical about bicycle design and cycling-related issues while riding hardly 10 miles per week. Hopefully that is all in the past (that is, until next winter) and I will soon once again have the pleasure of boring you with descriptions of 40 mile rides on my roadbikes, trips to distant grocery stores, and discoveries of new-to-me lands.


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