There’s been some cold, gray days lately. Add wind and it get miserable. The transition from warm weather to cold has grown more difficult the past few years. In part because of physical changes, but mostly mental hurdles of my own creation. Riding a Vespa below freezing has changed.
I converted this photograph to black and white because it more accurately reflects the way I have been feeling lately on the road with the scooter. No wonder or joy.
Made this photograph right after I arrived at Saint’s Cafe. The frozen lens on my little Canon G15 camera immediately fogs up when it comes in contact with the steamy air of the coffee shop and gives the picture a little misty look.
If there’s one thing about winter riding that is still exhilarating it’s coming in from the cold. The wonderful feeling that comes from heat remains something I look forward to.
I used to like cold weather. Something’s happened though. A litany of nagging physical issues has turned cold weather into a nuisance. At times worse — a danger — to my body. Some might wonder why I even consider riding when it’s cold. I can only confess an attraction to the challenge.
Looking at myself reflected in a window in a local bank I wonder who I am. Or am becoming. If I park the Vespa for the winter — that’s not a good omen.
It’s easy to ride in the winter on clear roads with no traffic. But that’s not alway the environment I ride through.
On the way into town I was reminded of how suddenly things can change on the road. Not far from the house is a big intersection with a traffic light. I’ll normally move through at 45mph. Fortunately, the light turned red and I had to stop. As I slowed I could see a sheet of ice stretching across both lanes and extending about 15 feet into the intersection. Had I hit that at 45mph, well, I like to tell myself I would have just let the scooter roll straight through but I’m not sure that would have worked. It was difficult to navigate across at a crawl when the light turned green.
Winter riding lesson — even when the roads appear clear and dry you need to be scanning and looking constantly. I wasn’t. Haven’t fully dusted off my winter riding skills yet.
And I probably won’t for awhile. The Vespa is off the road for a bit — perhaps into next year. But that’s a story for another post.