Archives for posts with tag: Not Cycling

Hello. Which rider are you?

Hello.  The countdown is on for the RLCT – 125 days. Are you ready? I hope not – not to be selfish but if you’re ready now then what’s to become of the rest of us. At the other extreme, I hope you’ve maintained at least a modicum of fitness this winter. I’ve found from personal experience that it’s very hard to start at zero and work one’s way into form in April when so many others have been active walking, swimming, running, skiing, or on indoor trainers. It’s not too late though to take-up the cudgel. You still have seven weeks before we hit the road. Don’t panic; just start your fitness programme now with a goal to ride 100 kms right out of the blocks in April. Gone are the days when we eased into the 100 km rides. So, there you have it – a shot across the bow to alert you to the quickly approaching cycling season.

I expect this year to be one of the best (for personal) reasons. I’m determined that age will not hold me back, yet. I also, expect to see the weekend group rides expand in size, with many of you already signed up for the RLCT. To that end, I’m proposing regular rides in the Gats (twice a month in the lead up to the RLCT and once a month thereafter), with a focus on hill work for that extra training edge. Proposed start at P3 by 7:30 am and riding to Chelsea via Pink Lake and the Corkscrew to the Champlain Lookout, with a return to the junction at Champlain and Gatineau Parkway. At this point, we’ll do a second loop. Total distance 63 kilometres and 1169 metres of climbing. Excited. I am. Can’t wait, but, really living in the now now. That’s the only way, right! Where else would you rather be? I know my Christian friends would answer this question differently as they hunger for the rapture but for me the end is the end, so to speak.

Been thinking of this, of late, as I continue to learn to soak up the entirety of each day and limit fruitless thoughts. Connection with others is paramount; connection with the natural world is essential. Favoured are those who have a boon companion – “We do not find the meaning of life by ourselves alone – we find it with another.” Thomas Merton

A few good friends make a difference in one’s life. Our small but dynamic cycling group is a big part of my life, and my enjoyment – especially as I’m increasing alone in off-season fitness pursuits. One day, you may join me in Mallorca? Life is like a funnel – open at the conical mouth and constricted at the end. I’m doing my best to hold off the inevitable entropic spiral to the bottom. I therefore express my gratitude to you all for your gravitational pull upwards.

Okay, Stay fit! Bye-bye, ac. Comments always welcome at;

Well hello. Christmas has come and gone. New Year’s, too, with lots of food eaten in short order between the two of them. Too much food (too much anything, actually) ruins everything, don’t you think? Like you, I tried to keep up some degree of discipline over the holidays but it evaporated like drops of water on a hot griddle, with just a bit of a dance for show at the beginning, and then nothing.

The good news is that I’ve stopped the spread. I’m holding my own at hole three of my belt. I was at hole four before the eating season began. I’m hopeful that the worst is now over. Also, by Mid January, it usually means a return to the in-door trainer, which has collected dust for about eleven months. This time last year I cycled happily in the basement to the Olympics and the Australian Open on TV. It won’t be as compelling this year. Still, I have to start – and soon.

One muses on such things on days like these when the weather is bleak, with no sun for days; glum inducing, for those with such predilections. Fortunately, high spirits can carry the day(s). One asks where is the sun? Mallorca, Cuba, Alicante, Tenerife. Pick anyone of them. They are all several airports and security lineups away. Yes, travelling tests one’s patience and takes its toll but the prospects of dry roads and warm air in far-flung places is very tempting. I keep my visa card ready by the computer on such days just in case Air Canada or Westjet pop up in my inbox offering last-minute deals.

What about you? How’s it going, eh. Stay fit, firm, fine – always.

Comments always welcome at;


No ordinary days

Well hello. And, Happy Christmas, or whatever else you choose to call this holiday season. I’m not fussed one way or the other, being of laodicean mind and agnostic in such matters. I tend to use the usual Happy/Merry X-mas most of the time but I’m equal okay with Happy Holidays. Either one is generic anyway. Everyone knows what you mean: it’s family time if nothing else – a remembering of those past, a getting together with old friends, a time for sharing meals and to raise a glass; a time of reflection and of gratitude; of good cheer, when one offers both friends and strangers best wishes for the coming year.

And, so, I send you this greeting from a fellow cyclist who benefits from your company on the bicycle. I hope you join me again in 2016. And, if I should fall off the back, maybe you’ll think to ease up a bit.

You know, it’s been a good year but it was just one of many stepping stone across a wide stream of years yet to come. It’s early days. Entropy awaits in the distant darkness. In the meantime, let’s keep the bicycle clean and ready for the road, the wheels true, the mind alert, the heart light, and the clock wound!

Here’s to you and yours. Bye Bye, ac. Comments always welcome at;

“I shall get up Sunday morning and wind the clock, as a contribution to order and steadfastness … Hang on to your hat. Hang on to your hope . And wind the clock, for tomorrow is another day.” E.B. White


I remember this poem from my days at university. Dorothy chanced upon it the other evening in a discarded library book. Thought you might enjoy the imagery. Perhaps, you remember it, too– a poem for the campfire and the canoe and wild places.


Cedar and jagged fir
uplift sharp barbs
against the gray
and cloud-piled sky;
and in the bay
blown spume and windrift
and thin, bitter spray
at the whirling sky;
and the pine trees
lean one way.

A wild duck calls
to her mate,
and ragged
and passionate tones
stagger and fall,
and recover,
and stagger and fall,
on these stones –
are lost
in the lapping of water
on smooth, flat stones.

This is a beauty
of dissonance,
this resonance
of stony strand,
this smoky cry
curled over a black pine
like a broken
and wind-battered branch
when the wind
bends the tops of the pine
like a broken
and wind-battered branch
when the wind
bends the tops of the pines
and curdles the sky
from the north.

This is the beauty
of strength
broken by strength
and still strong