There’s a corner being turned. The temperature is dropping. Various projects are progressing apace. My wife said it well:

My goals for 2011 are to take everyone by the hand and march us all left, right, left, right, forward, quickly, eyes open for opportunity and minds open for peace. I wish for everyone personal growth in relationships and careers and health and blessings on all people. May you all be filled with real strength and love.

Carissa is an amazingly strong person for whom I am very grateful. I could not navigate these waters without her. I’m also attracted to her each day more than the last. I don’t have a lot of relationship advice to give, but I think that’s the way this thing called love is supposed to work.

…when people are truly sinking…they have no idea what mix of character, connections and dumb luck will be enough to pull through

In reading On Road to Recovery, Past Adversity Provides a Map I thought about all the difficult times we’ve both had prior to being together. In this, the most difficult search for meaning, it might be thought that those past hardships were to prepare us for this. Or it could just be, as she put it:

…this is the era where everyone around me has had enough time to create something important. Celebrations are more meaningful and loss is more profound because in either direction there is such investment.

In any case, to consider all this random and meaningless, while valid, is a path to madness.

I recently started riding my bike a bit more. I got sick of my gut hanging over my belt. Counting calories has once again become a habit. Riding is the only way to keep those calories in the negative enough to really make a difference. I need to drink less too. I’m trying.

Rapha has provided some motivation:

Riding hard at Christmas is not a paradox. As you stuff your belly with food and soak yourself with booze, the roads may seem empty. But they aren’t. This year, riders across the globe will be squeezing themselves like oversized elves into tights and overshoes and heading out to go the distance, leaving the turbo trainer in the garage.

My goal was to do half of the Rapha 500. I got to maybe 200k instead. But I went on the longest ride I’d done since the 90’s. I rode more days than I had in any given week since the 90’s. I’m noticeably faster now than I was two weeks before Christmas. I haven’t lost any weight. But when I’m on my bicycle my mind clears and fills with good ideas and sometimes, even, a little hope. I still miss good opportunities to ride, but I’m getting better about not letting those pass me by.

Guiding a well built bicycle through a turn at speed is one of the most enjoyable things a man can do. If practiced, there becomes a sequence trained into the body that makes it feel as if it has joined with the machine beneath it, one entity with one mind. There is a cadence to the movements: the shifting of weight on the saddle and then on the pedals, the eyes’ line moves further ahead, then the body initiates the turn and the bicycle obeys.

It is starting to feel like the first beats of that cadence.

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