Friday, December 17, 2010

Wheelbarrow Load, and a Silent Night

Remember the trashpicked wheelbarrow?
I sanded it down, painted it, and now it's off to it's yuletide recipient- my 2 year old nephew.

I wanted to send it via UPS ground through my office, so I strapped it on the back of Gilbert, pushing the limits of my luggage straps.

It was so sunny and relatively warm  that I ended up stripping down to just my cords, a very thick wool sweater, gloves and scarf,  and still being too warm.  I know that Uggs are considered a fashion crime by many, but I have the smooth leather footed version that looks a little better, and boy are they toasty warm!

In the evening, I had a very calm and quiet ride home, thanks largely to off street paths.  I rode the Vassar street cycletrack all the way down to the "secret" shortcut through Ft. Washington park,  and thence through quiet residential streets in Cambridgeport to Trader Joe's, and then along the river path home to Harvard Sq.

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With very few cars, and on a crisp cold night, the city seems so quiet-  all I can hear are the soft noises of my bike- the whirr of the wheels, the click of the freewheel,  the small noises of chain and axle.

I've made some tweaks to my saddle position and am feeling unusually connected and tuned into the bike.  Everything just feels so natural, like the bike is an extension of my body that I use to get places simply and quickly.  What a pleasant and calm ride- the best kind of silent night.

Oh, and Somervillain really wants me to remind people of the Illuminations ride in Somerville,  and say that Bloc 11 closes at 8 on Saturdays, so we will probably go to 1369 instead.   For best results, meet us at the ride, and we'll all decide where to go from there!


  1. I guess i have only been riding my bike during dawn and dusk commuting hours but I only wish I had the thick-blood to call this weather "warm"! I have some magical clothing layers that work wonderfully, and yet my feet still get cold. ah well.

    i love the residential streets of cambridgeport, especially at 6am when I ride through there with not a single soul on the road!

  2. JPTwins,
    Riding at 1:30 in the afternoon made a world of difference. I had been in a cold house all morning, but riding to work mid-afternoon, under the full glare of the sun was almost pleasant! Try the Smartwool tights- they're amazing.

  3. sigh... jealous of midday riding.

    it's actually only my toes that are cold, and I'll probably try those heating pads that fit in your shoe. I just got my wife some of the smartwool tights based on your Orvis suggestion. thanks!

  4. I'm getting smartwool tights for Christmas! I can't wait to try them.

    JPTwins-- what do you wear on your feet for your commute? Are you wearing wool socks and wind-proof shoes? I'm discovering that one without the other (i.e., windproof shoes but no wool, or wool but air-leaky shoes) simply doesn't cut it on the really cold days.

    Also, FYI I may not be able to make it to the Illuminations tour because I will be out of state earlier in the day, but if not I still hope to make the meet-up afterward.

  5. Hi there!
    As a fellow architect (wannabe architect, actually, since I'm a student at the moment!) and crafts person, I was interested by Velouria's post from the very first lines - and then I saw your bike and I loved it!
    Yay for the christmas lights!
    Happy holidays :)

  6. Thanks for mentioning the short cut! I went to "discover" it yesterday. I love the little park it's connected to. So moody.