Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Biking wear, biking air . . .

I wore my lovely, sexy new boots several times this weekend in the city, and loved wearing them, but I left them behind in the apartment. Maybe one day I'll bring them back here and wear them into the classroom, but for now, I'm going to keep them off the muddy roads and the slippery docks. Sometimes making that switch in dress is more challenging -- yesterday morning, for example, as I pulled my bike out of the rack, I realized that despite the comfort of its heavy rayon jersey, my new black sheath dress (a score at Winners, perfect elbow-length sleeves, a collar ruff 4-5inches deep made of overlapping, fabric flowers in black and tobacco -- I love it!) was too narrow at the hem to accommodate mounting the pedals. Thanks goodness I was wearing my Burberry trench, which provided some modesty over the hiked-up-to-my-thighs dress as I cycled to the ferry!

As for the cycling, through the last several (well, more like 8 or 9) weeks of the year, I noticed that my tires were pretty soggy. But it's always dark when I pedal home, and I'm always tired and ready to get inside to my cup of tea or glass of wine, and I put off hauling out the pump. Then I forget about the problem 'til I head out the next morning, at which point I'll miss the ferry should I stop to put air in. I was finally forced to do something about the front tire at the beginning of December, but because wire panniers are hung over the back tire, the nozzle is tough to access and I left it for . . . you know, later . . . .

Well, Pater obviously noticed this while he was here over Christmas, and the first day I hopped on the bike after he'd left, I realized something was different. At first, actually, I thought someone had switched the bike to the easier set of gears, but no, same as I'd left it. Still, instead of labouring on the hills, I was zipping along easily -- it took me a second or two to figure out the reason and when I did, I was a bit chagrined that I hadn't made this adjustment long, long ago. What a contrast from a bit of air! Readers, this could be a metaphor for the little changes we put off making in life -- sometimes, the small effort of adjustment may pay off in disproportionate rewards. Sadly, I can't think of such a simple lifestyle adjustment that would promise such a payback, but I'll happily take your suggestions.

Meanwhile, it's enough for me to note that a small gift I enjoy each and every day, pedalling along, the gift of thoughtfulness and time, is a fine complement and temporary stand-in for the larger gift (my boots) that I've left behind in Vancouver. Were you fortunate enough to receive such non-material gifts of thoughtfulness over the holidays or at other times?


  1. I love that he noticed and took care of the problem, how sweet is that! Thoughtfullness is something I try to embrace in my daily round.
    Your new dress sounds like fun, may we see a picture of it? Nice to have details at the neck, I am a fan of that too.

  2. Aw. In the Asian culture, love is shown by just these acts of service. Takes a little getting used to, but then feels quite nice:).

  3. I love that he noticed and took care of it without pointing it out. That seems like a sign of true caring

  4. When I first started grad school I also started doing yoga. I learned in yoga that small movements can make HUGE differences. I take that insight into my work and into my personal life. It helps a lot.

    My biggest holiday gift was having a dear friend come and visit. It was anything better than any gift that could be bought.

  5. For me that puff of air is... sleep. How the world changes inside and out with enough sleep! Service to others is also a form of yoga (karma yoga).

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  7. Hostess: I might get 'round to photographing the collar, although black really doesn't display very well.
    LPC: While I suppose they could be disconcerting at first, I think I could get used to being showered with thoughtful gestures;-)
    Mardel: I thought it was really sweet.
    LBR: A friend's visit is a lovely gift -- lucky you!
    Duchesse: That's true -- an infusion of sleep makes me perform better as air does for a bike tire!

  8. MOM!
    It IS air.
    It is breathing. Everything is a little better with a deep breath.

    my pain tension cycle tonight could use a couple of deep breaths.

  9. I have been there to with the tires sucking up the road. The whole sartorial compromise we make for the weather is a pain, I do sometimes envy those that drive to work wearing so much less than me, but they are also 2 sizes larger than me so I figure sucks to be them.
    My unexpected gift was of course from my sister, whilst heavily dosed on morphine she arrived bringing me requested nightwear and deodorant, but then gave me a tube of Elemis day cream, I was so touched, by the thought and the generosity.

  10. Meg, sweetie: You're absolutely right -- why overlook the obvious? This is what I love about Pilates, what happens to me with a good massage, even what I get from relaxing into a facial . . . finally allowing myself deep breaths, realizing I've been stuck on shallow ones for days, maybe weeks . . . Life goes better with breathing! ;-)
    IndiAl: Spring/Summer/Early fall are so much easier to dress for -- dressing for cold and wind and rain can be such a bother, even if we're eager in September to get the woolies out.
    Your sister sounds wonderfully thoughtful, and you must have so appreciated her kindness even through your morphine fog.


I'd love to hear your response to my post. Agree, disagree, even go off on a tangent, I love to know you're out there, readers. Let's chat, shall we? I apologize, though, for the temporary necessity of the Word Verification -- spam comments have been tiresomely numerous lately, and I'm hoping to break that pattern.

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