Sunday, 22 March 2015

Marching on....

Not much of note to post since I haven't done any riding and am pretty much in survival mode waiting for this hellish winter to end. I hate winter. It has meant for me the end of the riding season and riding is my greatest therapy, the one thing that refuels me and takes nothing from me. I have spent the morning reading blogs by other riders living in places where you can ride all year round (something I'll be able to do next year), or where they have actual seasons and spring comes when it's supposed to. One blog I looked at this morning from Oregon had pics from a ride the bloggers did this past week and trees were already flowerings and temps were in double digits Celsius. I'm sitting here with several feet of snow still on the ground outside and listening to freezing rain hit the windows.

Before this blog becomes too bleak I do have a light of hope in the near winter bike. Although winter is slowly, I hope, coming to an end, I have purchased and old beater that I can ride with no worry about salt dust rusting my sprockets and chrome etc. It's still at Toy Box getting tuned as it was in storage for over a year, so right now it needs a bit of elbow grease to get running. The boys tell me I should be able to be on two wheels sometime this week if I get the right day. I don't mind the cold as I can dress for that, so it's just a matter of dry roads and no precipitation. It's and old '89 Yamaha FJ 600 with an inline four and four carbs ( that makes the tune up a bit trickier), but I can't wait to get out on the highway. November seems like a lifetime ago. Here's a couple of pics.

Apart from hunting down this winter ride I've used every tool at my disposal to keep the demon winter blahs at bay. My wife  and I have enjoyed several British series on NetFlix ( I really prefer the British shows to the American  ones) Currently watching Silk of which there are three seasons on NetFlix. We also watched Happy Valley, Scott & Bailey and Broad Church. I recommend them all. I finsihed reading Wild Truth and moved on to Wild by Chery Strayed after seeing the movie in Toronto, when I went up for the Segar show. I'm finding books about peole taking on significant physically demanding journeys strike a chord with me. I'm not much of a hiker but Sherry and I do walk a lot to try and keep the lbs down and stay fit. But these stories are more than just about the physical journey. They detail the emotional and mental journey the writers are on too, and I really connect with that. In year 28 of what has become a tiring teaching career, I feel I'm on a survival journey to retirement and the possibility of a new life travelling and riding and what that will bring. My lateest literary venture is entitled The 100 Year Old dman Who Climbed Out The Window and Disappeared.

I've also started writing and recording songs again, something I haven't done with any consistency for four or five years. Again, the catalyst for this was surviving the winter and expressing the emotions that I'm feeling right now. I'm not sure what prompted me to pick up the guitar again, but I was chagrined to find both my voice and playing had deteriorated notably in the intervening years since I played more regularly. The voice is coming back, though hot lemon water is a must; the playing still a bit mediocre, though the writing not the musicianship was always my strength. To keep things light I'll include a video here I did of a song I wrote about rum. I've discovered a wonderful sipping rum, El Dorado, to add to my repertoire of nightcaps and decided to go all Jimmy Buffett and write a tune about it. 

Well, that's about enough for now. I haven't blogged in over a month so for those who are following, thanks for dropping by. I did have the oddest experience a few days ago when my most recent blog  had 90+ hits in one day. I don't think I have a single post that has had that many page views.

Anyways, thanks for dropping by. Let's pray that April will bring something more weather approximating spring, as I think March may have actually been the worst month in what had been shaping up as a relatively mild winter bt Newfoundland standards.

Until Next Time, See Ya Out There! Ride On....


  1. That video is pretty cool. Coming from someone with no musical inclinations whatsoever, but I do love music.

    When we lived in British Columbia we couldn't ride all year round because of snow either. And last winter saw a few snow storms. We've been pretty lucky this year compared to the East coast.

    Having a beater bike for winter will help. At least you can ride during the cold if you have heated gear. You might need a sidecar so you can ride year round. Richard in Alaska puts studs on his Ural tires and rides in freakishly cold temps.

  2. The weather here on the Rock i s pretty varied, we often have extended periods of rain or dry weather amidst winter, which means the roads have little snow on them, so that's when I plan to use the old beater. I'll spray it down with rust check and get as much time out of it as I can. Thanks for writing. (HWM)

  3. That Yamaha looks almost like a classic - you sure you want to get it dirty?
    I'm hearing your winter despair ... just remember, the only career that has better holidays than teaching is retirement, but it doesn't pay as well. Keep making music and dreaming of summer. Nfld is beautiful in the summer (so I hear) and a whole lot easier to escape from!

  4. The dirtier the better and as for careers, I think I've run my last miles on this one. Retirement will pay well enough to keep the RV, truck and bike going...I'll be downsizing considerably. BTW, whoever told you NL summers are beautiful was, as we say here, "coddin' ya". We had about four weeks of consistent good weather last year after a winter that started in October and stayed 'til April.; nope sadly, summer is a hit or miss (often miss) proposition here on the rock. I have really good rain gear, though ;) Thanks for stopping by. Ride safe.

    1. It was my friend Ron - the "Art Rider." (I guest posted his adventure to NL earlier this year.) I have to admit though he's charmed (and probably a codder as well.) Seems to be wherever he rides the sun follows so the report may have been skewed. I met up with him in PEI this summer for my first sunny visit there in years and as soon as we parted ways the clouds moved in above me. Downsizing sounds good - good luck with it all. Enjoy the Yamaha!

    2. Lucky Man, though we do get some wonderful summer like stretches all the same. As for the Yamaha, it's in pieces now. It was stored for over a year so there's a bit of elbow grease needed to get 'er running. Unfortunately I'm not a mechanic so I have to pay someone to do it, but they're very good.