Monday, December 9, 2013

Adventures biking in the cold

The weather turned cold over the weekend.  Cold is relative, of course, but here in Austin anything below 40 degrees is cold, and it dropped into the twenties and thirties over the weekend, which is downright frigid.  (Sadly, the weather was so awful that my parents' flight to visit us was canceled.)

Last night was my first meeting with book group I recently joined.  (We read Wonder, for those of you who are curious.)  All morning I tried to think of excuses not to go--not because I didn't want to, but because I was being a wimp about biking in the cold.

I hate biking in the cold.  Walking in the cold--no problem.  But biking?  Ugh.  I'd just rather not.  The wind makes it feel ten degrees colder on the bike.  And then there's the problem with layers.  Finding the sweet spot of enough not to freeze but not so many you sweat profously ten minutes into the ride is nearly impossible.

Eventually I was able to rise above the internal whining about how I just didn't want to and remember that: (1) It's not actually that cold out.  (2) I have been cooped up in the house for days and need to get out and move.

So I biked, and it was fine.  Unsurprisingly, I made a big deal out of nothing.

This morning's adventure into the elements was less pleasant.  HP and I headed to the Thinkery--the new children's museum in town.  I checked the weather--cold, but no rain.  In fact, there was a zero percent chance of precipitation all morning long.

It rained the whole way there and back.

It wasn't pouring rain, more of a constant misting.  HP was fine since he was snuggled up beneath a blanket in the trailer and protected from the elements; he was practically toasty when we arrived.  I, on the other hand, was cold, damp, and cursing the Weather Channel.

I have rain gear from my time in Oregon--lots of it, in fact.  Not only do I have rain pants and jacket, I have a waterproof seat cover and matching booties that Neil sewed out of dental floss and an old tarp.  Of those four items, the only one I had with me was the rain jacket.  My shoes were soaked.  My socks were damp.  My jeans were soaked on the top and damp on the bottom. 

I considered turning back and scraping the whole plan when we were halfway out of the neighborhood, but I couldn't bear the idea of staying in the house all morning, terrible weather be damned.  So we continued.

Even with the cold and the rain, I am glad we went.  HP loved the train table and I loved how the morning flew by.  And let's be honest--I felt like a total badass biking in the cold rain.

Lesson learned: Wear the proper gear.  When you think to yourself, I'll be fine.  I don't need my rain pants!  Think again.  You definitely need the rain pants.

1 comment:

  1. You inspired me. After almost a year of living in Nashville, I rode my bike to work today. My excuses were always the weather (too hot, too humid, chance of rain) and traffic (downtown to Vanderbilt... yikes). Lately I've been saying it's too cold, but I have a nice bike and plenty of gear, so I did it. Turns out, 29 degrees isn't a death sentence and there are some quiet side streets at 6:30am. Pretty much feeling like a champ right now.