Sunday, March 30, 2014

A Little Exercise

Signs of Spring are apparent these days

I've been needing to get more exercise. Its been hard the last few months. Really cold weather. And I've put on a little weight this year. I need to get rid of some of it.

And I've spent a lot of time at the desk at work lately. Really busy at the office? Its that time of year for me. But I felt the need to get outside, maybe raise the heart rate a little bit. Blast out a few cobwebs from the body.

So on a beautiful Sunday morning I took out on Bruiser, my trusty and faithful mountain bike. Pumped up the tires, and headed out.
Makes you wonder if the designer of this sidewalk was drunk.
It was a windy day. Wind advisories were posted for strong winds from the south? But, not much of a surprise there. After all, the word Kansas means people of the south wind. Correctly described, at least in the springtime.

Selfie while waiting at a stoplight
Now, the smart thing to do, when on a bicycle in windy weather is to first head out against the wind, while you are fresh, then as you ride back home, you will be able to ride with the wind.

Of course, I don't always do the "smart" thing.

But I was close.

The water feature as I headed south against the wind
First I headed north. I know, wrong way, but there actually was a plan. The bulk of the ride would be either east or west, and the plan was to finish up going north.

This path is really fun when the vegetation is present, almost like riding in a jungle? Not today though.

I thought it would be easier to ride south through a neighborhood, protected from the wind by houses and trees, and I had a particular neighborhood in mind.

It was still slow going, curvy streets and pathways, but the effect of the wind was lessened.

Then I turned back west for a while, eventually reaching another turning point.

Signalling a right turn, back north, with the wind, toward home.

Ride on, and carpe diem, my friends.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Man, There's a Lot of Sand Out There!

With some of the snows we had this winter, the city/county authorities used sand instead of salt solutions because the temperatures were too cold for the salt to work well.

At least that is the reason they gave.

All I know is that at almost every corner or intersection there is a buildup of sand. And we know how dangerous that can be to 2 wheeled riders.

I'm here to remind you that it is not just the wheels of your vehicle that you need to worry about.

But remember that when you stop at a light or stop sign, what do you do?

You put a foot down, don't you.

Make sure that foot doesn't end up on a pile of sand! OK?

Ride Safe and Carpe Diem , my good friends.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Sometimes it's the little things....

That can turn a day around.

I really wish I was more eloquent with words. Sometimes I wonder if Mrs Bakalar, a memorable and inspiring English teacher I had in High School, would be impressed with anything I jot down these days. Then again it may not really matter that much in the grand scheme of things. Frankly, in a way, I write for my own sanity. Not sure if I give a damn what anybody else thinks. So there!

So let's see how eloquent (or not) I can be. 

Last couple of days have been a bit crappy. Really busy at work. Lots of stress. A couple of demanding clients. Feeling a bit unsure of my abilities. Venturing a bit into areas of tax law that I'm not as immediately familiar with. Piles of paperwork getting even bigger. Having to perform a few work duties that I really don't enjoy. Get the idea?

And it can be hard sometimes to overcome feeling sorry for yourself. You just want everyone to go away and leave you alone. You feel like you have to carry all the burdens upon your shoulders. And you're 57 years old now. You're pretty darn smart, and you're good at what you do, but you just can't quite carry the loads you used to. 

And in reality, I'm starting to realize that it's all just so much bull$hit! I don't want to carry all those loads I used to, and maybe that's okay!

So here's something to ponder.

I get home and there is this lovely woman who shares her life with me. It's been a crappy day, we're both tired and hungry, but she manages to make the time to cook up some dinner. And she puts that extra special touch of her love into it. And it is delicious. And I tell her so. 

We watch a little television together. We don't even say very much to each other because of fatigue, but we share the enjoyment of just being so utterly comfortable with each other. Thirty five years together can do that. 

Then later that evening I take our dog (and our cat) for a little walk. Not far, mind you. We had snow 2 days ago. It's not frigid, but cold outside. Heavy coat, hat and gloves are advisable, although the canine and the feline seem readily adapted to almost any kind of weather. 

But here's the thing. We are outside. In the elements. All of our senses are tuned in to the surroundings. We see the moon shrouded in some thin clouds. We smell smoke from some of the fireplaces in the neighborhood. We hear some dogs bark as we go by a house. We can sense that they are upset that they are confined to a back yard while the 3 of us get to roam freely. We feel the cold air on our faces, the snow on some paws.

It's life! It's real and it's exhilarating!

What happens at the office isn't!

We're out there experiencing the world. The cell phone isn't ringing or buzzing. Nobody cares about money in the bank or taxes that need to be paid.

And by the time we arrived back home, the day didn't seem so crappy. Didn't feel so inadequate. I forgot for awhile about some of the perceived demands and responsibilities in my life.

And I reminded myself that I'm okay, just as I am. 

I am enough! 

And so is Jayna, the woman that means so much to me. And so is Sophie (the dog) and Moe (the cat). Even Jake (another cat) is okay. He even jumped into my lap to help as I was tapping out these thoughts on the iPhone. Hard to beat a kitty on your lap, unless you don't like cats.

And I don't know for sure, but I'm sure that there's not a lot to be impressed with in this feeble little exercise from a vocabulary or grammatical standpoint......

But somehow I think Mrs Bakalar would say that it's just okay. 

Overall, this turned out to be a pretty decent day. All because of some of those little things.