I'm not actively blogging here anymore. But if you got here because you were searching for something about bikes, you might want to check out my latest project, Vermont Goldsprints. In summer of 2014, I bought a used goldsprints racing setup and have made it a mission to get more bikes in more people's faces by putting on fun races in unexpected places. Come join me!
We all have the cold. Austen snuffles all night and wakes periodically to protest the way a stuffed-up nose interferes with the use of his pacifier. Kate has had it for a day or two now. It started for me last night, a grating feeling down one side of my throat and now a pressure behind my right eyeball that makes me want to check the mirror to see that it is staying in. An all-day regimen of tea (to soothe my gravel throat) means waking up all night, every two hours, to pee. Like an old man. Last night at some unnamed hour we all awoke and hauled the little humidifier out of the basement for Austen. I don't remember when that was. Its little ultrasonic element that vibrates the water into vapor was dried out or clogged or something, so there we were, the three of us in Austen's room, Kate rocking him in the chair and me stabbing at buttons, the electrical outlet, stabbing at the little ultrasonic thing with a Q-tip trying to coax it back to life. It's making the noise but no vapor.You wouldn't know Kate had the cold if she didn't tell you. Austen, though tired and off his normal appetite, smiles and laughs the same, giggling through his perpetually running nose. I'm the real baby. I can't stand it, the reduced lung capacity, the fatigue. Kate recommends a decongestant, a vitamin."I hate pills." I say. What I mean is that I hate that the pills are not a miracle cure, their efficacy more imagined than measurable. I get the vapor going in the humidifier. At 5:30 Austen is up again, and I have the sensation that I have been wakened from a more peaceful sleep than the rest of the night brought. He's back to bed, we all sleep. Fifteen minutes before I need to be on my way to work he wakes again. I feed him, make the coffee, try to eat something myself. I get my bike stuff on and roll out the door, knowing Kate has had a frantic shower and is half together herself. I'm leaving her with more work than she should have to do. I have the fenders on, the lights, the shoe covers. The raindrops hit my thighs just the same. Wet wool. The first hill comes and I feel like my lungs stop an inch below my neck. Short breaths, try not to upset the delicate balance in my throat. There's a gremlin tugging back on my wheel, resistance like a flat tire but I can see there isn't one. Later, spinning, trying to find a rhythm, the cough comes, the sharp sandpaper throat follows, the grimace. At the top of the hill is the Poplar that drops leaves and sticks into the road. On a rainy day like this, I slow and go around. The leaves wouldn't crunch today anyway.