End of the Road

This evening marked my final ride home from the office in Allison Park. Fittingly, it was just starting to snow, though it was warm, at least compared to last week’s frigid spell, and the air was calm. The warm and stillness contributed to a good feeling in my legs, something that has been absent for what had seemed like weeks. I kept the pace high on the rollers on Mt. Royal, knowing this would be last time I would ride them with any regularity. I’m not sure I’ll miss this ride–the hills, though short, are steep, and there are days when you simply don’t want to put forth the effort. But that is part of the game, getting on the bike every day, regardless of how you feel or what the weather has given you. And I am at least a bit apprehensive about the new commute. After nearly 18 months, as much as I hated the hills, those roads were friends. I knew every pothole, every ripple of pavement, of those seven and half miles. That knowledge provided a certain comfort in my travels. Now, having only a single recce of the new route under my belt, I have nothing but uncertainty. I don’t know how well the various neighborhoods and towns I’ll pass through care for their roads when it snows. I will have to learn the patterns of traffic, acquaint myself with the regular commuters. Meet those people I will see everyday–crossing guards, pedestrians, even a driver here and there–whose nods and waves and hellos make the ride just a bit more bearable on days when it is hard to swing a leg over the saddle. It will fine, I suppose. Patterns will emerge, and what now seems like such a gargantuan task will become routine. All in a day’s work.