Monday, March 5, 2018

At Last

My cycling season ends in November, when dreary days and cooling temps make me glad to hang up the bike for the winter. December is too busy and cold even to think of riding.

It's usually January when the cycling urge begins to stir, with sudden memories of past rides flickering at the edges of thought. The longing grows with the lengthening days of February, and, when the calendar turns to March, becomes acute.

Once the roads are clear of snow and ice, the wait begins in earnest for a modestly warm day, preferably sunny and windless, and free of prior engagements.

Sunday afternoon meets nearly all the requirements: low 40s, bright and clear, morning church over and done. There's a biting east wind gusting to 23 miles per hour, but what is that to a road-starved cyclist hungering for the first mileage of the year? So Tallulah and I head out joyfully for a glimpse of 2018 from the saddle.


Almost the first thing we see is our own familiar shadow:

A shot of Miss T, who forgot her cycling helmet and is sporting a stylish winter hat:

We see pale fields resting under a late-winter sun...

...and find to our sorrow that a favourite barn has disappeared, leaving only a stone foundation behind:

Iris the bike renews acquaintance with a local bridge while I take pictures of the stream:

The wind loses its bite once we turn away from it and head back towards town.

We take one last photo - a well-loved scene of barns and trees and deep, deep blue sky:

A mile or two more, and we're home.

The first ride of the year is not only exciting, but symbolic. It meands that winter's back is broken; warmth and life are returning to the land; a year of unexplored roads awaits.


March in Wisconsin is notoriously changeable. Yesterday the sun shone, but tonight we have blizzard-like conditions. The next ride may be weeks away - but for now, this one is enough.

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  1. How lovely to get back on your bike again for the first time after winter! I bet that felt good! You will watch nature wake up again as you go on your regular bike rides. That must have been sad to see that your favourite barn had been taken down.

    Our weather is changeable too, but at least our Siberian cold conditions are behind us! I expect we shall get a bit of everything over the next few weeks: sunshine, rain and snow flurries! Enjoy the rest of your week!

  2. Lovely to see you back on your bike again. Sorry to hear about the blizzard conditions. March sure is wrecking havoc in many places. My NY boy has spring break next week so I'm hoping he actually gets some spring like weather. I think snow is predicted again for tomorrow. :/

  3. I’m glad you enjoyed your first ride Sue these winter months seem never ending but Spring is just around the corner, I can’t wait. 😊

  4. So glad you're feeling up to riding again! Even without snow or greenery, it's beautiful out.

  5. It's very momentous to have the weather warm up enough for the first bike ride of the year, bravo! Now.. what did they do with the barn and why? That is heart-breaking! Thankfully the barns in the last photo are being properly taken care of. ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

  6. Those scenes, especially the barns, remind me so much of home.

  7. My husband is right there with you and dying to ride his bike again. His Thursday night group has met with fierce cold and he's waiting patiently ( or not) for a warm day. I hope you both have many safe rides soon.

  8. Good to see you enjoying your ride.

    Your new header is beautiful!


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