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12/22/08
Catching Up and Bracing Oneself
Filed under: general, photos
Posted by: The Cyclofiend @ 2:34 am

It’s holiday time.  Of course, you probably realize I’m speaking of the Solstice, which means that after this evening, the days will get longer.  The lowest note on the double-bass with a low-C extension.  Time to start working our way back up the fingerboard.

It’s been a wacky few weeks.  Feels like a lot of stuff yet undone, even as some projects have come to fruition. It’s life.  It’s painting the bridge - a phrase I latched onto many solstices ago upon coming across the factoid that when the painters on the Golden Gate Bridge “finished”, it was time to go back to the beginning and start painting again.

Which sounds kind of depressing as I type it, but really was not meant that way. It’s more the yin-yang, cycle of/circle of life meaning.  That we don’t ever really get “done” done, regardless of how many discrete “things” we accomplish.

Hmmm… wasn’t where I was planning on going this morning. Must be the (WONDERFUL!) cold pie that I took home from Friday’s class (thanks Chuck!) combined with Peets Holiday Blend leading me astray. 

As I woke up this morning, the beginning of today’s rain pittered a couple of drops on my head while the dog and I sniffed at the morning air out back.  I tucked her back into a warm spot on the bed, then pressed coffee, nibbled at some email and restoked the woodstove. There’s really something about starting the day’s warmth from the dormant-seaming coals of the previous evening.

Got things crackling a bit and then headed out to find a Sunday newspaper.  Took the Zeus for a little wet-road-errand-love.  I’ve been too long off of that bicycle recently and it needed to get a little fresh air in its nostrils.  Meandered a bit on the way to the local Kwikee-Mart, enjoying the zikking sound of the soft 650B tires on wet pavement.  Big leaves are finally hitting the ground, very late this year after the long tease of warm and dry weather.

Finally I pulled around to the parking lot.  It’s not a large market, and there were only a couple of cars parked this early in the day. Dead center in the lot was a car with a rear window sticker advertising the owner’s personal training business.  They even had a personalized license plate on the car, with a cutsey message reinforcing the window sticker. They were also parked in the only disabled slot in the lot, with the appropriate red (temporary) disabled placard displayed on their rear view mirror.

Pulling a copy of the paper from the rack, I queued up behind the only other person in the store who could have been the personal trainer - dressed for it, appropriately coiffed and in noticeably good physical shape. Buying two large bottles of Mountain Dew and a pack of cinnamon gum. Health food with a good caffeine burst.

Of course, I should talk - jacked up on strong coffee and day-old pie. So, I didn’t talk, didn’t comment.  Just found myself sort of smiling at the odd contrasts and tiny incongruities that make up all of our lives.  Although I’ve held some odd jobs in my time, I never had to be cheery and upbeat and any kind of a physical role model to anyone for 8 - or even 4 hours straight. If it takes you 40 ounces of sickly sweet soda to do that, more power to you.

I mean, my legs were pretty clunky and sore from the previous day’s fixed trail riding. And after I eased my way home, I was planning on some serious baking (sticky bun batch #2, carrot bread, trial batch of vegan pumpkin spice muffins) rather than any serious bike mileage.

So, I headed home, smiling a bit as the rain became heavier, enjoying it on my face and hearing it thrum gently against my wool jacket. It’s the holidays, and the days are going to start getting longer now.
 

Happy Winter Solstice!

4 Responses to “Catching Up and Bracing Oneself”

  1. beth h Says:
    “The lowest note on the double-bass with a low-C extension.” Simply the best description of the Winter Solstice I’ve heard. Beautiful. Have a great winter.
  2. the tourist of cyclos Says:
    Thanks Jim. That brought a smile to my face, and nearly a tear to my eye. David
  3. Chico Gino Says:
    What Beth said. You have a way with words that often strikes the right chords in my head to cause reading pleasure. :-) I can’t believe the days are going to start getting longer, just as the rain is starting. We need it so badly, and here’s to hoping fenders are a necessity for at least a few months this winter.
  4. Jim G Says:
    “Painting the Bridge”…love that one!