Friday, July 30, 2010

got bike!

I didn't think a more expensive bike would be better, but it is - so I bought it. I test drove almost 50kms to make up my mind today. Carbon is so smooth, and light is so fast. They had me hook, line and sinker.

I'll do a photoshoot this weekend. I am trying hard not to fret and feel bad about selling my old bike. I love that bike and it changed my life. I guess it is a proven performer and it is going to a new person who will love it as much. I hope so, because it is beautiful to have a relationship with your bike.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

back at it

Well it was nice, but it had to end. The Tour and my holiday are over. Ryder got a seventh, how good is that. Daniel Oss, my 'random filler' pick on the fantasy tour was one of my best picks. Cadel got respect for being a hardman, but was a bit upstaged by Thor. I wish I had ridden more, but I needed to get the chores done, and being home means a nice lunch leads to a nap after a long ride, so I had to have days where my energy got used on more productive pursuits. Still I got in some good rides, and my tan lines are well set in.

Work is just nuts, everybody wants a piece of me and there isn't that much to go around.

The real news is that I let a PostDoc ride my bike, and she loved it and will buy it if I am willing to sell. So I rode by the bike shop and tested a higher end bike, and I think I just may be willing.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

holiday mode 2

I have cycled a fair bit, and napped, and painted nothing so far. I have cleaned, and cooked, and eaten lots and drunk a fair bit of wine. I have watched HOURS of the tour, this is a full time occupation. Holiday mode, I am blissed out!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

for Carol

After a lot of bother my sister finally succeeded in getting me some flowers for my birthday. Here they are! A very wintery Australian arrangement. It is really lovely but I think it cost too much. Thanks for thinking of me, maybe you can charge the Atlantic Master Gardeners for them as fee for services rendered! (I made the new website : )

They should last a long time and one of the banksia is new to me (the starburst one on the left). Always something new to see. It is wonderful that the internet makes the world so much smaller for those of us who are far away. Thanks for the gift. I would never buy these myself and they are pretty special.

It is funny to translate my birthday to winter. Yes the weather is only a bit cooler than summer in Nova Scotia, but it is winter with that autumn leaf smell and softer light. This arrangement looks Christmas y to me, but of course Christmas here is gushing tropical blooms and heat. Some things I don't think I'll ever fully adjust to. My birthday used to be summer BBQ and the cottage and the pain of a sunburn. Ice cream cake. The canoe with Gus (the labrador) following in the water, Chaucer (the corgi) in the prow. Now it is a cold start on the bike with a long ride, coffee, my own beautiful place, dinner out with my men. Different, but super.

Thanks for the reminder Carol.

Monday, July 12, 2010

how I spent my summer (winter) vacation

I know it is July and winter, but it is hard to refer to July as anything but summer after a lifetime of conditioning. What with the fields of sunflowers and shimmering heat of the Tour de France, I am feeling a bit summery. It is also the nicest (warmest) winter in a long time, feels like summer in NS to me.

I note with interest that real athletes take whole blocks of time of for recovery. Today I decided to save my energy for some chores, and take a second (!) day off the bike. I hung out with a best mate,
and he seemed to enjoy a day spent in one spot with me in sight as I got stuck into 'the holiday project'. Here you see a half day of effort, scraping paint off of the french doors with the wee tool in the photo. It is hard work, but once you get a bit of practice and a leading edge it goes along.
When I finish these doors there are more, as well as casements and sills. *sigh* I am riding tomorrow, surely I can do this when I am sleepy....

Sunday, July 11, 2010

nurturing the inner bogan

Or revhead... whatever. We went to the V8 races today and I have to confess it was a lot better than I expected.
BoaB, our Boyo, Roommate of Boyo. They talked us into going. "It will be fun, really!" and they bought the tickets so what can you say?
The cheap seats. We actually had 2 tickets to the fancy bleachers but this was better. You sit in your own comfy chair. The view over BoaBs shoulder includes a big screen, and the cars roar past plenty close. My ears are still sore.

The people watching was excellent. There were shirts and outfits for lots of teams and events from the past, as well as the cool kit for this event. I love my cycling and these people are just as excited to see their heroes as I am to spot Cadel or Robbie. As an Australian cultural experience it was really great.

I am pleased to note that the cars driving under a safety flag they are only twice as fast as me around the track. ; ) When they are racing they are almost 5 times as fast, but then I don't have a V8 under the hood!

If you like car races and want to enjoy the best weather Townsville has to offer then come next year. It is actually a really fun day out and we will probably return next year.

Saturday, July 10, 2010


If I wanted to, I could hop on my bike, flange on my Ay-Ups and go to the end of the bikeway, where INXS is in concert for the V8 race. Cool. But I would rather have a glass of red, some chocolate and last nights recording (ad free!) of stage six. But still, it is cool that I could hear INXS if I wanted to, really.

on holiday

I am on leave from work. Canadians will be shocked to learn that in Australia there are so many public holidays, such generous leave provision, that it can build up til you get a note from the boss suggesting you may want to consider actually taking some time off. Since this is field season and the office is like a ghost town, and the Tour is on the tele, I am having a couple of weeks off.

So far I have cycled too much, vacuumed every day, edited all the commercials out of the Tour so I can actually enjoy watching it, reordered and cleaned my kitchen cupboards, tossed stuff out. I have cleaned each link of the chain on my bike with a screwed up baby wipe so that it is just like new, inside and out, and of course washed the bike and oiled the chain.

Today I had a nap, but it is pretty common for that to happen on Saturdays. I have had a thorough catch up on many blogs and forums. Inspired by AMR I think I will do some product reviews in coming days.

I will remember to take the camera out for some rides and liven up this rather dull BLOG.

Monday, July 5, 2010

no more map

I got so annoyed with my feedjit map that I nuked it. It lost the plot and had me pegged as being for Yatala (I don't even know where that is, must google it), then Brisbane. Then it seemed to think most everyone in Australia was from Brisbane. And that Americans are from USA. Not very useful any more. If you know of any cool widgets I have some real estate available.

Sunday, July 4, 2010


We rode the V8 track this morning. The barriers are up and the roads are closed, and there was a ride for charity so we rode. Afterwards there was a race and we rode that too. Three D graders, we need to recruit a few more! But there were a few novices, and a good roll out for A,B and C grade, so I just settled in for a hard ride and stayed out of the way as best I could. If you didn't lap me I don't think you tried hard enough ;p

A half hour and two laps, on top of 4 slow laps for charity, two warm up laps and a cool down one. 2.7 kms each and the ride to the track and home = 50+ kms. Not that big an effort, but after getting showered up, eating a huge and beautiful brunch at a friends and going home to a nap I am still just toasted.

Tour de France live at 10pm. Hopefully I'll have some energy to do a few chores tomorrow. At least the dog is getting some quality time. He just loves naps.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Happy Canada day!

Yes it is that special day when the weather is probably about the same here and in Nova Scotia!!

Today was a day at work like any other (actually it was a very weird and stressful day at work, but I can't talk about it) with a pretty ordinary ride at either end. But we have a Canadian staying with us for a few weeks, so we decided to celebrate with ... hot dogs!
Forgive the soft light but it is totally dark here at 7pm, it is winter after all. I made potato salad, the proper kind with Miracle whip, peas, paprika... but best surprise ever, BoaB made fresh biscuits, and sugared up some strawberries and whipped cream for strawberry shortcake!

I nearly forgot to take a picture before I completely devoured it. Kerin (our distinguished guest) supplied rye and gingerale. Very authentic repast je pense. Bonne fete Canada!