We have company this week - a dear friend of Beloved's from Germany and her 8 year old daughter. They are wonderful guests, helpful and non-obtrusive (a real feat in an NYC apartment.)
Two important things are in play now: Beloved is caught up in being with her friend, and she somehow injured both her ankles running (showing off?)at the track. They hurt and are swollen, like a sprain. I told her last week that too much was as bad as nothing at all when she was exhorting me to run (to no avail.) I reminded her that we are over 40. I cried when she was clearly disappointed. Can't she see that I am working hard at this? That keeping on keeping on is more important than speed or "winning"?
As I continue my workout (stepping smartly) until finished, she is sprinting ahead and stopping to stretch or rest in between. It's a fundamental difference between us, I realize. She can beat anyone in the on-the-spot competition: faster, more capable of the push needed to win. So not where I am coming from.
This week I ride to the warehouse in Jersey City for the first time alone. My seat decides to slowly descend until the rack on the back is acting like a brake. I call Beloved in a slight panic since just moving the seat up spins the rack at a crazy angle. I really want her to come and rescue me since I knew this bicycle crap was total bullshit. And here is the proof.
She gives me some instructions, but I am not an engineer. It doesn't seem to work like she said. She is laughing at me (she has a very well developed sense of schadenfreude) and I am getting pissed. I give a curt "good-bye" and hang up in a huff. I consider abandoning the bike but the walk home is too far. I fool around with the seat and rack and finally understand how the "quick release" mechanism works. I adjust the seat and go on.
I am so incredibly proud of myself. It's a tiny little thing - but I fixed it. By myself.
The buoyancy crashes later in the day on the way home when I have to walk up the two hills from the warehouse to the PATH station again. I try telling myself that it's OK, that I really achieved something today with riding alone and fixing a problem -- but I don't listen. Why should I listen to an old, tired, fat, unable-to-do-slight-hills, out of shape mess?
We take a few days off to go up to the property we just bought in Sullivan County. So there is a break from the forced march since Beloved is distracted and slightly injured. Whoo-hoo!
And then I find out that I feel terrible. I feel huge and unable to move. Everything is an effort. I am so crabby that even I don't want to be around me. Even my in-denial brain can figure out that this is because I have gotten used to an hour of exercise every day, and now my body is in shock.
As of 5/18/08: