Now, as I’m writing this, it’s incredibly cold down here in Dixie, and frankly, everything from about Albuquerque to the Atlantic in is the deep freeze. By the time you read this, things will likely be back to normal here, but I’ve got something to say:
Damn it’s cold!
No wonder some of ya’ll get so angry when the snow comes and the mercury drops. Honestly? We don’t do that here. The temps rarely go below freezing, and lows in the teens are a once-every-two-years kind of thing.
With that said, this cold snap DID make me appreciate the things I don’t have – a heated garage, insulated pipes (the neighbor down the road had a frozen pipe blow out in the ceiling, and what a mess…), and “heavy” clothes. I’ll tell you, I’ve only rarely been in a situation when a pair of Walls “Blizzard Prufs” couldn’t turn the cold, but splitting up some kindling today sure made me realize how good we’ve got it down here.
All this is to say that it’s been a few days since I had any desire to sit on the bike, and I found this out: If I’m not thinking about riding, tinkering with the bikes in the garage, or riding, I can get an awful lot done.
This week, I’ve split enough kindling to handle the fireplace for the rest of the year, I’ve organized my toolboxes, my workbench is as clean as it’s been in two decades, and the “Round Tuit” list from She Who Must Be Obeyed has all been done.
I’ve rearranged the linen closet, changed out countless bulbs (under the premise of “upgrading” to LEDs), organized the attic a bit, and rebuilt two carbs and cleaned every firearm I own.
I am bored out of my damn mind…
Aside from getting some honest victories this week, I’ll be honest, I’m really pleased to not have spent any money online on gear yet. The Boss lady got me a couple gift cards and jokingly said they’re to support my bike habits, but even with all the “busy-ness” and after Christmas sales, I haven’t spent a dime.
Now, though, I’ve got a question for you all: what do you do when it’s like this for months? Seriously! I remember my Dad telling me about when he was at Great Lakes a lifetime ago and how “everything was simply still” on those coldest mornings, and how he’d sit there drinking black coffee and dreading another day in the cold and always thought he was a little overdramatic.
Not now. I guess the bigger thing is the simpler one: In less than a week, I’ve come to realize just how blessed I am to live where I live and to have the freedoms I have. I think a lot of us forget about that, in our haste to keep up with the Jones’ or to emulate those we see on television or social media.
Riding is about freedom, and when we can’t – or won’t – exercise that right, we lose some more of it simply by realizing it.
Keep the shiny side up AND get back on the bike.