Thursday brought another chance to ride outside in the cold. I wasn’t looking forward to the cold that much, but wasn’t going to pass up a chance to get a ride in.
I headed to the southern roads again, mostly because I was one a mission to get a photo a super jank hunting blind that I couldn’t really capture with my 135mm lens the day before. This time I would have 300mm at my disposal. There were also a couple other photos I wanted to get that I missed out on the day before, so this would be my chance (with varying levels of crap results).
The first thing I noticed as I pedaled uphill about .25 miles into the ride was that I felt like shit. Not just your everyday shit, but a dead inside type of shit. Physically, mentally, emotionally, sexually (not really); I just wanted to lay down in the gravel along the road and go to sleep. But since that seemed a little overdramatic I pedaled on and waited for my legs to come around.
This time of year can be strange to be riding the dirt roads. Everything is brown, the roads are dry, dusty, and sandy and there is little to no activity in the fields. We have been blessed with a week containing so much blue sky and sun that you bust out the shorts and flip flops but soon realize that despite it LOOKING like it’s 70˚ it’s 29˚ and will only creep up to about 40˚ if you’re lucky. Having said that, I will still take blue sky and sun over low hanging clouds, and ice cold rain (even though I prefer such conditions for my picture-taking).
Eventually, my legs came around and I got to the hunting blind that I wanted to capture. Sadly, while I was able to get a closer shot of the jankest hunting blind in the world, it wasn’t that good of a photo. Leafless trees, brown fields, and harsh sunlight left me disappointed. Sigh.
I pedaled on snapping pics here and there and enjoying my time on the PrOcal. As I pedaled down one road I passed an Amish guy walking along the road carrying a cord of wood. “A little cold out this morning!” He yelled. “Just a little bit!” I replied as I rolled by, noting that this was probably only the 4th or 5th time I’ve actually exchanged words with an Amish person in over 7 years of riding in rural Michigan. Mostly we just exchange a respectful nod and smile, knowing that we share the brunt of hate from American motorists due to our choices of non-motorized modes of transportation, as well a staggering amount of deaths and injuries due to vehicles with inattentive, ignorant, impatient, and/or inebriated drivers behind the wheel.
If you think about it, I’m basically the same as that dude, just without the horse, hat, beard, drab clothing, religious faith, and ability to build and grow stuff.
The ride was going well enough but when I started to feel the pangs of hunger in the belly I thought I better turn my rig northward and home towards a hot bowl of chili. So I north and right into a Goddamn, cold ass headwind.
The wind was cool and power sucking, made worse by a stretch of ungraded soft dirt laid down by the county. I was all over the bike at times trying to get uphill. Then I started to feel it…. My left ass cheek which has suffered much over the past year due to an ongoing battle with saddle/chamois irritation slowly started to get rubbed the wrong way (opposed to the right way). By the time I got home, the left side of my already nasty as fuck ass—which B-Man believes would look like a soggy Arby’s roast beef sandwich—featured the outline of a chamois pad illustrated in raw skin oozing sticky blood.
If you’ve read this blog over the past year, you know that first I thought this ongoing rubbage was from the chamois in a pair of Sugoi bibs, but then I believed it was due to a cheap saddle I had on the Boone. Now on I can definitively say that it’s the bibs; the only pair of bibs I own that the ass isn’t blown out of.
With my ass on the disabled list, I suppose I’ll just hit the dreadmill today, take tomorrow off the bike since I’m at the shop most of the day anyway, and then look towards Sunday for some saddle time.
Time to go slather my ass with Neosporin® and do some chamois shopping.