Wednesday, January 21, 2009

A Midwinter Night's Dream

Its been a long cold winter here in central Minnesota. Still is. The hope of getting a ride in on the nicer days was precluded by the need to keep the driveway shoveled out. Or snowblown, take your pick.

I thought about putting posts down many times. Each beginning felt more like a memory of last season's rides than anything new and fresh. That's where the spark is after all. Each ride takes on its own personality. The places you go, the things you see.

I'd write a bit, then realize somewhere deep in the anals of this site were posts similar enough to that the new would merely be a rehashing of something already written. Since all of us north of the Mason Dixon line were experiencing this same cold snowy season harking back to winters of more than a decade past, I chose to leave this site dormant. Fresh experiences are right around the corner. New rides, groups and individuals to ride with are exactly the awakening freedoms of spring I want to be able to share. Two stroke smoke hopefully. The resurgent budding of living greenery along the shoulders of familiar country roads. Old haunts.

They'll be different this time around. Opportunities to ride with my wife just ahead or behind me is something I'm really anticipating. Like a kid waiting to rip into the giftwrapping hiding anxiously awaited toys.

All the years we've had riding together have always put her against the bike's sissy bar. Now she can ride on her own. About the middle of last summer she earned her endorsement. Too late in the season to plan rides. A pair of five year olds take precedence. And planning.

Still, every parent knows how much time is left in the day, the weekend, or the season. You can either try to map it like a rigid calendar ahead of time, or you can creatively adjust as each week takes its turn. Funny balance. Not unlike keeping the shiny side up as they like to say.

So I'll ride and write. I'll breathe deeply and try not to make too many excuses. The seasons throw you curves in the northern climes. Snow and ice is something I wait to pass from the lane before regaining my freedom on two wheels. Traction is as important as it gets. When the roads finally clear and the days get longer, there's still no guarantee it will be warm, though. There's an old saying I hadn't heard until I moved to this sometimes deathly frigid state;

There is no bad weather. Only bad clothes.