The cold snap broke last week.
After what felt like an interminably long, cold winter, Portland finally saw its first 60-degree days, and I rode in them. Mostly solo coffeeneuring rides, but occasionally an added errand here and there allowed me to ride a little father than the boundaries of my little neighborhood.
Things are growing, blooming at last. Cherry and apple trees are blossoming now, a few weeks later than usual. It's as if everyone and everything is waking up, lifting their heads to see the sun and feel its warmth. And while I am still beset by the lethargy of winter, and loss and grief and depression, and inactivity, it's a very welcome development.
Here are some photos from last week's out-and-abouts.
A ride over to Rhythm Traders, to pick up a couple spare parts for a drum refurb project.
The sky was gloriously blue!
It was still a little nippy out, so I suited up in traditional Portland plaid and my favorite between-season cap.
Of course, all of this was supplemented by hot coffee in a thermal cup, which I sipped while I pedaled. It felt good to be out and about and more like a person again.
It's been hard to get myself up and out of the house, even on sunny mornings. I live at the bottom of a long gradual hill -- the result of living in a city built on top of a bunch of small, dead volcanoes -- and if I want to go more than a couple of blocks south, I have to ride up and over it. So it takes some serious mental coaxing to get on my bike and go farther.
So far, when I do it, eventually I start to feel better. My knees don't creak so loudly, and the wind feels good on my cheeks, and with the sun peeking out I begin to almost believe that there will be a light at the end of this sad, lonely tunnel of COVID isolation.
Sweetie and I won't get our shots till probably sometime in May, but I can always go outside in the meantime.
Yesterday, I rewarded myself for doing a bunch of yardwork by taking the singlespeed for a scenic loop that included what I call sushineuring. If you want an amazing lunch that will fill you up and make your mouth supremely happy, get the Sashimi Combo Platter at Mio Sushi. You can thank me later.
(Double Darn makes caps in multiple sizes and types of fabric. They're comfortable and fit easily under a helmet. Check them out.
Golden Pliers has, in the wake of Rivelo's brick-and-mortar closure, the Portland Rivendell dealer. So I like to ride past now and then and see what's parked outside.
Last time, it was a newer Atlantis, an old and very tall Bridgestone XO-1 and an even older Motobecane ten-speed from the 70's that had been cleaned up and refurbished.
I don't miss dealing with the crap about running a business, but I do enjoy visiting the better bike shops just to see the cool bikes and smell the vibe.
I look forward to the day when Golden Pliers can open fully, so I can go inside and order a cup of slow-drip coffee and a sandwich and hang out in the undemanding atmosphere. And when I can do that, I will celebrate. I will throw a fucking party. Come join me.
Until then, happy riding! Wear a mask, wash your hands and stay safe.