Thursday, March 24, 2022

Miraculous to ride in the sunshine again.

 It feels miraculous to ride in the sunshine.

Today's high was in the mid-60s, and it looks like it will be that way through much of the next several days. I am taking it slow. I rode a mile down the road today to meet a friend for coffee. She hasn't been riding all that much either, so we've promised each other to work our way up to a half-hour social ride together later in the spring.

I'm not going far, and I'm not going fast. My thighs burn when I start out and I'm taking it really slow for now.

The whole stretching thing has always eluded me. Even when I was racing a decade ago, I never learned how to stretch properly. But clearly there's a need for me to learn a few basic stretches and use them before and after every ride, because if I don't my knees hurt afterwards. At my age, that's not going away. So I'll ask my doctor for a few good leg and foot stretches to help me loosen up a little.

But once I got going today, it was nice. Cold in the morning, but sunny. Everything is blooming right now -- daffodils, dandelions (ugh, the mowing!), and the first leaves of the tulips are coming up. In a few weeks the daffodils will fade and the irises will come in. I love riding during the spring here, and even if I don't go very far from home, there's still a lot to see.

I've started working VERY part-time at a synagogue in NW Portland, once a month. As part of my learning, I'm going to one Saturday morning service a month and just sitting in back, following along and learning a new prayerbook. My goal is that, before the summer's over, I'll be strong enough to ride all the way there, a distance of about six miles. If I don't make the goal I won't beat myself up (that's what Trimet is for!), but it's just a nice idea of returning to something I used to be able to do.

Today was lovely. I'll hope to get another ride in this weekend.

Monday, March 14, 2022

After a rough winter, leaning into spring: bikelovejones returns

I won’t lie. It’s been a very rough winter her at Rancho Beth.

Between all my usual pesky medical things and a new twist, my health took a nosedive in the early fall, and stayed there for months. It took time to get a proper diagnosis, but it appears that I got slammed with serious case of Crohn’s-related anemia. I had a blood transfusion a couple weeks ago, and that helped restore some oxygen to my blood. Next up, five weekly infusions of iron by IV (because I can’t take iron pills anymore), after which it’s hoped I will be back to full density and able to function again.

So, in a fit of optimism, I signed up for Urban Adventure League’s Mileposts Ride on May 7.

Between now and then, I’ll need to put my All-Rounder bike up in the stand and give it some love after months of benign neglect.

Along the way, I’ll be going through the small mountain of bikey things I no longer use or need, and will bring a small backpack of them with me to the Bicycle swap Meet on Sunday, April 3rd to make some quick cash. I will also have a casual reopening of the Bicycle Brain Trust next month, and locals can come by and hang out and dig bikes together. I’ll announce the reopening date in a future post.

Meanwhile, I will hope to begin taking your old, unwanted adult bicycles for refurbishing and distribution to those in need, sometime in late April when I’ve made some space. Stay tuned.

And a special note of #gratitude to each and every one of you who reached out to me while I was down and out over the last few months. Your notes of encouragement and goodwill meant and still mean a lot to me.

I look forward to being able to ride my bike around Portland again this spring.

I won’t ever be fast again, but I’ll be happy to ride.

Happy riding, and keep the rubber side down.