Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Big Things for Ought-Ten

Ought-nine has come and gone. What a year is was!
1. We made a baby. Claire arrived on June 15th, and life hasn't been the same since. Mom and dad adjusted nicely to a life of doting on a giggling drooling little nut. She's already aware that I'm a dork; smart kiddo.
2. The house is finished. Early in the year we wrapped up a complex home addition and renovation. I cannot remember a more stressful period in my life. The project was over budget and behind schedule. There were no major disasters, which means that our project was a success. I'm still glad it's done. The house is beautiful. I hope we never have to move away from it.
3. Given both items one and two, I'm pretty pleased that I still managed to find time to ride. 3015.2 miles in all, not as many as in 2008, but I'm pretty happy with myself. I relish every ride these days. About half of the miles were commuting miles, the other half were recreation miles. The Rivendell A Homer Hilsen logged 1305 miles. The Trek 610 fixed-gear logged 1006 miles. A few other bikes picked up the rest.
4. Still commuting by bike. This one is more about mental wellness than anything else. It's a good way to start the day and to wind down after work. I probably average about 3 days per week by bike for most of the year. It beats driving a car every time.
5. Got a couple new bikes and sent one away. My wife bought me a Salsa Ala Carte mountain bike for my birthday, hot diggity! The Ala Carte is perfect for the trails in my area. An orange Rivendell Rambouillet frame and fork found me, yes it found me, on ebay. It took me many many months to aggregate parts and put it together. I eagerly look forward to riding it. That orange paint is the best. The Lemond Poprad now lives in Portland Oregon with my brother in law who is using it as his primary mode of transport.

Ought-ten is almost five days deep, and I've got plans.
1. Grow the baby. Claire will be my new sidekick. I hope to get her out for some cross country skiing very soon. I may think about getting a bike seat for her later this summer.
2. Bikes, bikes, bikes. Cycling is a continued obsession. Riding to work is a great way to ride regularly. I'm thinking about getting a set of rollers too. Rollers? What have I become? I never thought I was a rollers kind of cyclist because I think riding indoors is unnatural. Here's the thing. My free time is more limited these days, and planning ahead is the way to make things work. Riding in drizzle is OK, but often the weather is much worse and it's unpredictable. The weather is always fine in my basement. So maybe I can put the bike on some rollers on nasty rainy days or in the late evening when family responsibility is reduced. Why am I so determined? I'd like to complete the Boston Brevet Series this year; that's 200k, 300k, 400k and 600k. I think I could make that work with some careful planning, and I'd like to be fit enough to following through with it.
3. Stretch. I hate stretching. It is boring and takes away time used for fun activities which are usually the kind of activities that tighten my back. The cold reality is that stretching is necessary and makes me feel better. My goal is to stretch every day. I've stretched on each of the last few days and I already feel better.
4. Playing banjo. I more or less stopped playing banjo four years ago. I was tired of it, and we got a dog who kept me busy. Only recently did I rediscover the banjos in the basement. My fingers are starting to remember it. It turns out that Claire finds my shoddy playing quite entertaining, and that alone is motivation to keep it up.

That's about it for now. Best wishes in the new year.

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