February – Can’t Say I Miss You

I got lazy this month. I only rode 21 days out of 28 for a total of 546 1/2 miles (145 1/2 of which were indoors). But I did get some useful things done off the bike. For the year, I’m at a rather anemic 1,273 miles.

I managed to get my three main bikes (The Mule, The CrossCheck and Little Nellie) fixed up for when the warm riding weather hits. New chains, cassettes, bar tape, and such. The front brake on the Mule continues to rub just a tad now and then. I think that it will stop sticking once the pads wear a bit.

I also created eight tour journals on Cycleblaze.com. (A word of warning. I am not known as Rootchopper on Cycleblaze.) Three of the journals previously resided on Crazyguyonabike.com but the owner of that site kicked me off because I posted a journal based on my WordPress blog posts on Cycleblaze which he considers hostile to him. The journaling project took 20 or 30 hours to do, but it has been something I have been meaning to do ever since the pandemic hit.

Speaking of the pandemic, I recently received my first dose of the Pfizer Covid vaccine. In about three and a half weeks I should have received my second shot and had time for the potion to make me effectively immune. I have hopes of seeing some live baseball games this summer as well as doing a bike tour. Pinch me. My scheduled trip to Machu Picchu is probably going to be delayed until 2022 just to be on the safe side.

I’ve been otherwise keeping busy with taxes (refund!), having contractors look at a defective bay window, getting the lawn mower ready for spring (anybody know how to removed a frozen spark plug?), going to three doctors (no bad news1), and shredding old financial documents (it ate up four hours of my Sunday yesterday). In the process of hunting for the documents I bashed one of my toes against a support leg of my bicycle trainer. I think I broke the toe. (Dr. Internet says it will heal in a few weeks on its own.)

On the pleasure side, I read two books, The Splendid and the Vile by Eric Larson is the story of Churchill during the Battle of Britain. Every time I have been to London I try to imagine what it must have been like in 1940. Two years ago we toured the Churchill War Rooms. It’s no surprise that I found the book fascinating. Just imagine 9/11 happening day after day in cities all over the US for a year. I also read Beautiful Girls, a novel by Karin Slaughter in the style of Gone Girl. I’m not a fan.

My wife, daughter, and I have had weekend bubble dates. We watch Wandavision (strange), SNL (surprising good recently), and movies. We watched Nomadland last week. It’s pretty depressing but you could learn a few life lessons from it. It’s filmed in the deserts of Nevada and Arizona and brought to mind my 2019 bicycle death march across Nevada. A second rather depressing movie that we watched is I Care a Lot about grifters who take advantage of the elderly. Last night we watched A Man Called Ove, a faithful adaptation of the novel by Fredrik Bachman. I want to re-read the book, but my copy was turned to mush in a leaky pannier while riding through a week-long tropical depression in Florida on my 2017 tour to Key West.

March awaits. More sunlight (sun sets after 6 tonight!). More warmth. I’m ready.

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