It's good to have pet projects and hobbies. Music has unfortunately been in a lull as far as collaboration is concerned, and will probably stay that way until I have a good way to cart my crazy large keyboard around.
In the meantime, I've been getting a bit more serious about my bike. The trek really got me thinking about biking as a means of transportation, as a workout, as an activity, and as something just plain fun. The problem with bikes is that they're a money sink. I thought I was saving money when I got a pair of bike shoes for 65% off, and a bike jersey for around 50% off. And then I buy the pedals/cleats, and the multi-tool, and the odometer, and all of the sudden... Bikes might be the most efficient means of transportation, but recently, it's been the most efficient way of thinning out my wallet.
I had my first ride in my new cleats today. Cleats really help with efficiency, but the flip side is that it can be kind of hard to get your shoe out of the pedal when you need to. For beginners (which is me), you're supposed to practice releasing your foot from the pedals at a fair distance away from where you actually want to stop. This was working fine today, until 5 miles into my
10 mile 8 mile ride, my chain decided to derail at the bottom of a hill. No time to prepare to release, I was kind of stuck, and really lucky that I was able to get my feet out and avoided falling into the road (which almost happened). I'll have to take a look at the chain/gears... I'm not at the point where I can actually service my bike (though I did manage to put the new pedals on), but I want to learn. At some point, not this season but within the next 2 or 3 years, I want to do a century (100 miles). At that point, the Trek Across Maine might be nothing. (Here's hoping.)