Sunday, March 14, 2010

The coming of spring

The lawn is still mostly covered in snow, but the roof is clear. The roads are clear and some of them are getting quite muddy, but our road is still patches of ice and snow mixed with mud. We haven't seen any temperatures in the 50s yet, but the 40s are getting reliable.

So it may be a little early to be thinking about bicycles, but on the other hand, I have an antsy dog, so maybe not. Therefore, yesterday, I dug out all four bikes (four!) to fill up the tires, since the cold weather and months of disuse leaves them all saggy. The electric-assist bike has also been charging all night. While the weather today is chilly and rainy and a bit windy, and thus thoroughly unauspicious for bikeriding, it might be at least as suitable as the days near the end of the season last year that I went out. So I might take the dog out for a short ride.

Of course the bikes might need more of a tuneup than that, but this is a good start. I think I'll probably bring a bike to work pretty soon and start doing my rides there as well. As buried as I've been in work lately, with the elimination of positions dumping so much extra work on everyone and so many projects hitting us, it's always felt like I didn't have time for my exercise. But that's a fool's game; no matter how many 15-minute breaks I skip because I feel too pressured, I'm always going to be just as behind, and anyway, exercise is more important than meeting arbitry and impossible workloads. So it's time to get back on my regular schedule. If we fall farther behind, that's only proof that they've dumped too much on us, and we only have to do what's possible, not what's requested.

Another reason it's good that spring is nearing is that we're almost out of seasoned hardwood. There's a fairly large pile of the soft, half-rotted pine that makes such excellent firestarters and such poor firewood, but after that we have to tap into the other half of the split woodshed which would probably be okay but which is intended to not be ready until next season.

Given how much we burned, we definitely will need to buy one or two cords this year in addition to anything I manage to cut, but on the other hand, we cut our spending on heating oil a great deal, and that's compared to the last two years when we'd already cut it a fair amount, so I am pleased.

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