Monday, December 6, 2010

Chilly Cheer

A guy stopped next to me at a light this morning, rolled down his window to ask "Aren't you freezing?"

I said, no, I'm exercising, so I'm pretty warm, except my toes.  I think it may be time to switch to boots, or at least wool socks!  I wasn't really thinking about it, but I was wearing lined wool pants which helped, a cashmere sweater and a light weight windproof trenchcoat and a big fluffy scarf.  

Tonight it was maybe 30  with a nasty gusty wind flecked with snow flurries (the TV says it's 27 in Foxboro with a WC of 17),  and when I came around the corner to the top of Beacon Hill, the wind practically stopped me in my tracks.  I'm trying out a new route to avoid the hostility of Broadway, and while it's promising, the lights are not well timed, and the ball of my "down" foot got cold from being in contact with the pavement (plus sitting still gets chilly).

Fortunately I have some holiday cheer to keep me warm inside:  Behold the return of Christmas lights!

I bought these battery powered LED lights last year,  and just pulled them down from the attic with a lot of other Christmas decorations this weekend,  Gilbert's basket is smaller, so they go around twice. 
Just in one ride I've already heard a couple of comments- people seem to really love them.
They're a bit too silly for all year round, but lots of fun this time of year!  Do you decorate your bike for the holidays?


  1. I have these awesome super thick wool socks. I think they're for hiking or something. But they work really well for cycling, and don't have to be washed that often. So yeah, get wool socks!

    PS, love the lights!

  2. oh my god! I totally want to put christmas lights on my bike now!!!

  3. It is definitely chilly out there - though I am disappointed they keep promising snow and then "canceling" it!

    The lights are very cool : )

  4. Smartwool socks rock, as does anything lined in shearling! Just dress like a Siberian and you'll be fine. That said, I admire you and the other winter cyclists I see this week--I think I am done for the season. It's not my feet so much, but my hands and face, and I can't find gloves or mittens that keep me warm and give me the close contact I want with grips and brakes.

    Love the Xmas lights too!

  5. Awesome! That makes me smile.
    Seconding the recommendation for wool socks. Also, use insoles. Even the thin Dr. Scholls ones provide that extra layer of insulation between the pavement and your feet. My feet never get cold in my handknit wool socks.

  6. those lights are cool! where did you get them?

    as for keeping warm, i just 'invested' over $300 into winter cycling woolens...

    with wool socks and thick-soled shoes, my feet are fine. only my fingers and face were getting uncomfortably cold, and i hope to have that problem tackled.

  7. Somervillain, I got them at Tags last year, although I've seen similar (not quite as retro) at Home Depot. A suggestion to all for keeping your face warm, is a thick lotion or face cream. I thing that helps a lot on keeping my face from feeling dry or cold.
    The insoles are a nice idea, although I'm not sure if they'd fit in a lot of my (tighter fitting) dress shoes. I'm off to Tj Max to scrounge some budget woolens after looking at the prices of wool undershirts online.

    I actually get much much colder at jobsites, where I'm standing around in a unheated house, often in proximity to foundation walls that just suck heat out of you. I have serious sorel boots and long johns for days when I'm out there, but those are much too warm for riding.

  8. I heart the lights. I'm going to copy you, if I can find them.

  9. I passed your bike on my ride to work yesterday and admired its happy festivity.

    Smartwool is worth every penny. Their sock liners plus a pair of wool socks have kept my toes warm this week.

  10. Love love love the lights.

    And Smartwool socks. For other woolens, consider a trip to Goodwill. I've found wonderful merino wool or cashmere turtlenecks or quarter zip sweaters that work far better than polyester fleece for a lot less than a new Smartwool top. If using as the next-to-skin layer, I buy a smaller size than I would buy if I were acquiring a new sweater. Hard to beat $4.99...

  11. those lights are cute, my basket is ready to go, mini-poinsettas, blinking lights and everything
    found you via lovely bike
    nice blog - greetings from San Francisco