It was 27 degrees F and the sky clear this morning at 7:45 as I finished a short yoga practice (that included satisfying use of the knee rods and the Simhasanana box) and began this ride out South Race Street.
With various out-of-town life-marking events (funerals, a wedding) it had been almost two weeks since my last recorded ride, so was extremely eager to get on the road!
Today’s strategy for hand warmth was just to wear the bright magenta runner’s jacket with the hand-covering sleeves. Also, after the initial ginkgo shots
(and, e.g., above), rode without stopping (passing the bare apple tree and the place where the mushrooms had been) until I spotted a ginkgo with yellow leaves raining copiously to the ground, making very much a raining sound.
But on the way my mind was pulled away from unmitigated joy by the craziest things, by thoughts of coming change, disappointment, regret, not so much at the results of my efforts as for having been so far off in reading them. Battle fatigue. Even images from past wonderful rides cluttered and clouded my availability to embrace this unique morning just as it was. And, most absurdly, felt slightly impatient to be sitting with a cup of coffee, looking at the photos and writing about the ride!
Then there was the cold. Brrrrr! First it got the fingers and then the toes. Now the magenta jacket didn’t seem like the best choice. Thought about how nice hand/toe warmers would have been just then.
Reached Old Church Road and thought about going on, but it was just too cold!!
Turned around and on the way back took a little movie of my shadow to contribute to “Ride for Ray.”
At the edge of Meadowbrook Park took the unofficial short cut into the park and got a shot from the rabbit-statue bridge over McCullough Creek.
The trees were pretty much bare and the green on the ground continuing to fade.
Was glad for this late show of color.
Really felt cold, but kept on, working to let go of the clutter and stay present. It got easier after a while. Noticed that the cold didn’t completely obliterate a sense of enjoyment. It still was good to be out riding, smoothly and deeply taking in and letting out breath.
Actually didn’t mind so much the discomfort but worried about whether the cold might be damaging to the joints of my extremities. Must think carefully about protection for winter rides.
Realized again that I was not going to untangle all of my problems today; the ride was only eight miles, after all. But, cold or not, for now it was good just to ride and breathe.