I’ve had an enforced layoff from my bike commute through injury. Not my own injury although my back is enjoying the break. Master15 decided that skateboarding in the rain was a good idea and broke 3 metatarsals in his left foot so our week started with a couple of days off school, shortly followed by Master15 taking time off with nausea and vomiting.
A trip to the ED for attempted realignment, followed by another journey for a lightweight cast 4 days later as well as being chief cab driver for master12s dental appointment meant a swift reduction in bike miles. The van hoovered up £60 of fuel in last week as I was forced through circumstance, weather and late work finishes to drive. Boy did I feel dirty polluting the environment. I was even resentful at times when I spotted the growing number of people riding bikes their bikes on my numerous journeys. I managed a paltry 30km through manufactured errands and getting out on little rides when I could so this week, now that both boys are back at school, I was straight into my routine yesterday. The Monday ride to and from school was punctuated by a couple of doggie walks. Gee it was good to get out again and I was looking forward to my commute today. But our quickly fading elderly cat had other ideas, waking me at 03.20 a.m, wailing with confusion and at his aching joints plus empty stomach.
So this morning was a sleep deprived sloppy splatter along my summer trails that have turned into a muddy mire. Freshly cleaned Boris was not happy about it but I couldn’t help it as I wanted the joy of riding them one more time with all the exhilaration of doing it in the dark. There was quite a lot of sliding as the new tyres, on order since over 2 weeks ago still haven’t arrived via the salary sacrifice scheme. I made a mental note to stay away from this route until the Spring.
While I was at work, I called the Vet to enquire about changing the focus of his suffering with some dignity. He has been with us since 2002 when he was 18 months old. The dementia, the failing hind joints, dragging excreta around the house and the pain have become too much. While it’s the kindest thing that we can do for our grand old chap, I’m in pieces over this decision to end his life. At least he gets to eat like a king and be spoilt during his last days…
I made my excuses to leave early and headed out into the wind and threat of rain. I ploughed through the puddles along the river path and took dry roads the rest of the way. I was threatened with my own mortality by a couple of people in their Land Rovers, one a Discovery and one a Range Rover. The roads are too narrow for these things but they’re built for the crappy surfaces that pass for roads hereabouts. I got back to the van early to snare a primo parking spot as close as was legal to the school gates to collect Master15 who had been on crutches all day.
It was early, early enough to take the bike out and idle up to the supermarket to buy some tasty cat treats and gourmet food. Leaving work early to get a premium park and going on another smaller ride may become my routine for a while.