Tuesday, November 18, 2008

The wind at your back

November Cycling from Toby A. on Vimeo.

November - it really isn't the greatest month. I saw an old friend yesterday, visiting from Beirut. It was lovely to see her - but why anyone would leave the sunny Mediterranean for dank, dark Helsinki in November, I have no idea. Lebanon's political history must give it's citizens a dark sense of humour. The Finns tend to see themselves as a dark and brooding bunch - whether they actually are more dark and brooding than, say, any other northern Europeans is, I think, not clear - but come to Helsinki in November and you can well understand why they think they might be.

Anyway, cycling in this weather becomes a chore. Yesterday I rode to work and it was gusty and a few degrees below freezing, meaning numerous layers of clothing to put on including over-shoes for my feet, as I have real problems keeping my toes warm once it is much below zero. It's a chore to get ready to cycle, and then cycling itself felt a chore, slow going with strong side winds. But at least I could watch the sunrise as I went. Cycling home today should have been awful - dark as coal with high winds that were blasting drizzle and sleet about - but it wasn't awful. Rather, with a 10 m/s wind behind me the whole way it was a perverse joy (to the extent that I felt the urge to try and capture it on video). In summer I see hundreds of other cyclists during the 25 kms journey. Tonight I saw five. So, fellow miserable-November-still-cycling-dudes, I salute you!


Dave C said...

You'd probably rather not know the conditions I'm walking to work in down here in November!


Toby - Northern Light Blog said...

But when its getting rainy and cool in May for you - then we'll laugh! :-)

Dave C said...

Haven't you heard? There hasn't been a rainy May here in central Victoria for about 15 years now! I've been walking to work for two years and I reckon I've only had to contend with rain 5 or 6 times altogether. Climate change is biting big time here!

Toby - Northern Light Blog said...

For some reason I thought you were in Melbourne, not inland. When I visited it was over 15 years ago and it rained the whole the time - hence I always think of cool and rainy with Melbourne! :-) Have they been getting the same drought? And have these storms up in Brisbane meant any more rain further south?