discarded and decayed

It’s been a bit of an odd day. I was going to write about something quite different, but the way the day has turned out has got me feeling like writing about it.

About a month ago, I got a flat tyre on my bike. It had happened before, and DL helped me replace the inner tube, and it was all good for several rides before it went flat again. It was a bit unusual because I had cycled in to work with no problems. I locked my bike up in the allocated cage in the car park, and didn’t notice anything amiss. Yet, when I returned to my bike later that day, the front tyre was completely flat, and couldn’t be inflated.

Annoying, yes, but not a major problem. I caught the train home that day, and figured I could replace the inner tube again — perhaps there was a tiny rock or bit of glass lodged inside the rim, and it would be a simple fix. However, week-end after week-end passed, and it was either raining (I don’t have enough space in the garage to do work on the bike inside), or I was too busy/tired (or both). So I put it off, and ignored it, and thought about it, but didn’t do anything.

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last minute, next minute

In the last week-end of May, I flew down to Canberra to visit a friend. I called her on the Thursday afternoon to check if the guest room was set up yet (they’d moved over a month prior, but I knew they’d been pretty busy). Having confirmed everything was ok, I booked my flights that night. About 14 hours after that, I was on the plane.

Last week, on a bit of a whim, I decided to go to the Rudimental concert. Ok, there was a fair bit of deliberation about this, but only for a few days, and right up until I bought the ticket, I was still equivocal about the whole thing. I left work on Monday, half-convinced that I shouldn’t go, but by bedtime, I was 100% committed to going. Continue reading

in motion

So, after the not-so-bad weather in the last week or two, it has suddenly gotten much, much colder. Freezing!

I find it kind of weird, though, how I still feel ok walking to and from the bus stop without a coat/jumper on (really just goes to show how insulating my work uniform actually is) but coaxing myself to get out of bed in the morning or to turn the water off after a shower is such a struggle. I know that I can handle the cold… but I suppose the transition is the real hard part.

I suppose the bus stop is only a short walk away, so it’s not like I’m braving the cold for very long, especially considering that the buses tend to have pretty decent heating now. But walking past/along the creek – it’s absolutely freezing around there! Just have to walk faster to counteract it and get away from the creek.

On a kind of related note: Something that I’ve discovered recently while on the bus to/from work is that I no longer seem to get motion sickness or headaches from reading while in a moving vehicle (planes don’t count), which means more reading time for me! Although, to be fair, the bus trips are quite short. Still not sure how’d I go with reading on a long drive. I’d probably fall asleep…

Speaking of driving, I can’t remember the last time I’ve actually driven anywhere. But, then again, why drive when I can get the bus and read on the way?

Anyway, also just wanted to mention that I’ve still been going cycling on most week-ends (if the weather’s good). I find that I can get a bit bored of going along the same tracks over and over again, so I’ve been trying to discover new places that are good for bike riding. I went cycling around UQ the other day, and I’m surprised I haven’t gone there earlier! I want to go back and explore the Dutton Park / Fairfield area, too.

And when I’m sick of that, I’ll go somewhere else.

The good thing about winter is that I can cycle for two hours without getting drenched in sweat. The bad thing is that it gets dark earlier (I’ve got lights on my bike, but prefer not having to use them). It’s kind of cool (in both senses of the word) cycling near the creek, though. It’s like cycling through one gigantic fridge.

I’m also (pleasantly) surprised at how much shade-cover some bike paths have. And I’ve noticed a couple of new bike paths being constructed/planned in my local area. Can’t wait for these to be completed and opened. Sort of seems like they’ve started the projects and just abandoned them half done, though, so I’m not holding my breath on those.

on ya bike

Today’s a public holiday (Anzac Day for those of you not from/in Australia – according to WordPress, my blog gets quite a few international visitors…), so yesterday kind of felt like a Friday and today felt like the week-end, so it feels like tomorrow’s Monday… except that it’s actually Friday tomorrow, and then there’s the real week-end after that. It’s just a really bizarre feeling.

So today I went for another 20+ kilometre bike ride. This time down to southside. I never realised the bikeway extended so far… And then I just had a look on Google Maps, and realised that the bikeway actually goes further than where I’d gotten up to (you just have to go through a few intersections or something to get to where it continues on).

I haven’t been cycling for over a week, so it was good to get back on my bike. However, since my long walk/run last week-end, cycling doesn’t seem as… good… Not sure how to put it exactly…

I already mentioned in a previous post about how running/jogging requires effort 100% of the time, whereas cycling allows you to just cruise along now and then, so it’s not quite as satisfying. But today, as I was taking a break from peddling while my bike merrily sped down a gentle downward slope that seemed to go on forever, it struck me that it was kind of like cheating – I was covering so much distance using only the effort required to sit upright and hold the handlebars.

I suppose what this means is that the distance covered or the time taken is not a true reflection of energy expenditure or effort. To be fair, though, I had to cycle up every slope that I cruised down on my way back home. (That was another revelation that struck me while momentum and gravity helped accelerate me along the bikeway: “Hmm.. this is nice.. Oh wait, I’m going to have to cycle back up this way later when I’m more tired than I am now. Damn.”)

It wasn’t so bad, though. I cycled around my local-ish area a bit when I got back because I wasn’t that tired, and the trip hadn’t taken as long as I thought it might have, even though I ended up going further than I’d originally planned.

The main reason I ended up choosing a bike ride rather than a run today was because I have work tomorrow, and I figured bike riding would leave me less sore and tired the next day. Seems like I made a good choice, if my current state is anything to go by. I’m saving the running for the week-end.

new bike! (…finally)

So, after years of thinking about it, and months (?) of talking about it, I (finally) got a new bicycle yesterday.

The only downside is that I’m kind of too busy this week-end to take it for a proper spin… And I’d like to do a trial run before actually riding it to work on a work day.

The actual purchasing process was pretty interesting, though. I never realised that buying a bike was so involved and complex. There’s, like, a whole science behind cycling. (Yeah, ok, there’s probably a whole lot of science in every sport, but I never realised the extent of it until I actually went to look at bikes and talked to the people at the bike shop.)

Anyway, they do what is called a “bike fit” and measure you up (torso, leg and arm lengths and overall height and maybe something else that I forgot) to make sure that the bike fits you in every way, etc. Then they went through all the general stuff like gears, maintenance and whatnot. And somewhere in amongst all of that, they talked about servicing and tuning and how it’s supposed to be done every three months or something…

Well, anyway, there’s a whole users’ manual that came with the bike, so I suppose I’ll read through that some time while I’m waiting for next week-end when I’ll hopefully have more time to actually ride by new bike.

And in case you are wondering, the plan (at this stage) is not to cycle to work every day, but maybe just on one or two days per week. I’ll just see how it goes…

In other news… You know it’s been a busy week at work when the manager(s) come in to work on a Saturday (when it’s usually just one pharmacist + assistant) to finish off whatever it is that they need to do. Today (my third time as solo pharmacist on a Saturday – don’t worry, I’m sure I’ll stop counting eventually) not just one but all three pharmacist managers visited the pharmacy (operations, dispensary and oncology). Let’s just say that I’m hoping that this coming week is not as hectic… especially considering that I have to work six days (Mon-Sat).