Monday, October 12, 2009

Pondering Pandora's Box

My day started by having a very long conversation with Jon about training strategies. I need to think about my motivators and goals for the coming season. Riding across the country is just the icing on the cake. Training has been tough lately, too much life in the way, not enough motivation to put life aside when I am exhausted. We really hammered out the goals for the next event I have in mind. I plan on skating ice marathons this year. Matter of fact, I am passionate about rekindling this part of my life. The way I see it, skating will hold my leg strength and endurance for the heavy training I have to do in the spring and it will provide the change of pace to keep me going.

The next part of my day was spent at the funeral mass of Roseanne's father. While sitting in this place that used to be so familiar to me I found myself reflecting on the events that caused that door to shut. It was like meeting a long lost love in the street. You still feel something but you are thrust back into that confusion of everything that was wrong. This reflection was eventually reduced to forms and simple emotions. I found the thread for the next concentration of studio work. Ever wonder what the evils were in Pandora's Box?

On my way home from church, I scouted a route that I had planned to take today. It is a difficult route that has a bit of everything, several long and steep climbs, several miles of flats and lots of rolling; 100, Whitehall Corners, Moseman, Pines Bridge, Mahopac Ave, Granite Springs Rd...Of course we will throw in procrastination too.

So I embark on my ride. Why is it that I really look forward to riding, then procrastinate, then rework the root when I finally get underway? I must have argued about my choice of Moseman and Mahopac Aves since the climb on 100. I knew they were going to fry my legs, and after that little stunt yesterday chasing down Jon and sitting on his wheel before blowing by him, my legs were toast already. Today I did manage to convince myself that I needed to stay the course or my goals would be compromised. The ride was of no consequence, the hills hurt, but I expected that so somehow they weren't as bad as I thought they would be. The only real story to tell was that I managed to get scolded by a cop for riding on the road. Yes, you heard me right. I was threatened with a ticket if I didn't comply with his order to ride to the right of the rumble strip in the shoulder. Interestingly enough, there were cones set along the white line to provide a safe lane for pedestrians leaving Muscoot. He was there directing traffic. The pedestrian lane was chock full of people, had I traveled in it I risked hitting someone. So I jumped out of the cut in the rumble strip and rode at the extreme right of the lane of travel. I am still shaking my head about this encounter.

I did some reminiscing while riding. I found myself steeped in nostalgia while riding up Moseman Ave. For some reason I was pulled back to my Freshman year in HS when I spent the fall raking leaves with AFS. Funny, Roseanne's sister-in-law was instrumental in that club fundraiser. I also thought of how much that neighborhood had changed in the past 25 years. Its so built up and it looks like they leveled one whole side of the ridge to make a new development. As I pondered new construction in this market of the mini-mcmansion glut I wondered if that waste continues to be a contributing factor in our economic woes. We can't sell what is available so build new bigger, better, greener? This got me thinking about the recycling of a house. In the next few minutes I passed the homes of my children's friends that used to be the homes of my childhood friends. Then there were the couple of houses that used to be restaurants, then there was the house that used to be a a post-office then a candy store and now is a private home. I found myself drawn, almost too much, to looking for the ghosts of houses in the woods, the hermit caves, the root cellars, the hitching posts that have been repurposed as planters. All in all it was a fantastic day.

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