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Thursday, May 23, 2013

The Golden Globe

If you ever got stuck in a lift in Leeds, London or Liverpool with three strangers what would you expect the 'Ice breaker' to be?
The answer is something that bookmakers would not even take bets on - The Weather.
We seem totally obsessed with talking about it.
Comments about the weather seem to have the same importance and promote the same passions as ones favorite football team.
When people snarl on monday morning, muttering that it was a 'bloody diascrace', its difficult to work out whether or not they are talking about Hull Citys woeful performance or that of the local weather man.
Daily courtesies have been hijacked - with the traditional 'Good Morning' being replaced by 'Hasnt it been cold lately' 

I have to confess with five apps on my phone relating to the weather I too have been influenced
Almost hourly looking to see how wet, windy and warm it may or may not be.

Whilst others might be gauging this phenomenon for the possibility of golf, gardening or alfresco gastronomy. For me its about Cycling.
The early season sportives have supplied weather conditions so adverse that I would not normally consider recreational riding.
High Winds, driving rain and plummeting temperatures were delivered in good measure, its been so grim.
However having forced myself to take part, I have now become conditioned.
Poor weather seems to have become part of my cycling arena.

If I was being reviewed by a Psychiatrist and they showed me association cards it would be easy peasy

Down hill Skiing = Snow
Beach Volleyball = Sunshine
Cross country Skiing = Snow
Sand castle competition = Sunshine
Snow ball Fights = Snow
Sailing = Wind
Kite Surfing = Wind
Wet T shit competition = Rain
Mud Wrestling = Rain
Cycling = Wind, rain , Freezing Cold

Its not such a bad thing though - It takes away any deliberation.
Before I used to talk myself out of rides.
'Its far too windy'
'Its far too cold'
'Its too wet'
I now just go out and pedal........... and let the weather take care of itself.
If its poor,
I expect it.....If its better than poor
I smile because its always a bonus.

On one such recent day we took off to Dalby Forrest in North Yorkshire.
It was a chilly start, but soon we saw this Golden Globe in the sky which seemed to emanate a greater degree of light and some unaccustomed warmth.
Coats, and arm warmers were discarded, dark lenses were clicked into eye frames and perspiration was encountered.
After much debate we decided that the celestial object might be the sun, but none of us could quite remember what it looked like.

As Bobby was wearing his Arizona Cycle jersey with the sun brazened across the chest we thought that it may have been seen as some sort of Celtic offering of appeasement to nature.
That the Gods had seen his Cycle Jersey and blessed us.
What we all agreed on was that it was welcome.

A great day was had by all and other days soon followed.
Summer may have arrived as far as the Calendar is concerned but the Winter Gloves, booties and Coat are still in the hallway.

One of our American Mules Dani Hochleutner recently summoned up the weather far better than I ever could :-
The COLD just makes me angry, so I have learned to be well equipped.
The RAIN makes little difference to me, surprisingly. I simply adjust my speed and feel a bit like a little kid again.
The WIND. I looked up the definition of wind and it said "air in its natural movement" which sounds harmless enough. But HEAD WINDS and CROSS WINDS batter at my confidence and have me question my resolve. Thoughts like "go home", "just quit", "turn around" hit me with each peddle stroke. And then that infamous TAIL WIND whispers false confidence that I am better than I actually am.
So I learn something about myself every time I get on my bike. I learn how to be with the reality of who I am, in a world I can't control, and to adjust. Easily, calmly and thoughtfully I move into alignment with the elements of my resistance to becoming something better, faster, and stronger. And eventually I make it back home.
Happy Cycling

1 comment:

  1. Great post Philip....and I thought that I was the only person with half a dozen weather apps on his phone :-)



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