Zorro was hoping to get the new bike last week. And he was keen to go on a long ride asap. “Let’s go to Mudgee”, he said. “But it’s the middle of Winter”, I moaned. “Ha, we’ll just rug up,” he says. “Besides, the new bike has heated hand grips.” Yeah, good for the rider. I’d like a heated seat, thank you. (Haven’t even got the bike and I’m already regretting that it’s not a ‘proper’ tourer.)
I have discovered that winter riding isn’t all that bad. I am talking Sydney winter, of course. Which half the world scoffs at with “That’s not winter.”
Generally for me, if the sun is shining, life is good.
My winter riding gear consists of:
- long johns tucked into winter-weight socks (put them on before pulling on my Drayko jeans)
- my lovely woollen Icebreaker singlet that Zorro bought me in New Zealand
- a second light layer under a fleecy pullover, zipped up to my chin
- the lining in my Rjays jacket, and all the vents zipped shut
- a scarf wrapped around my neck (flapping in the wind – makes me feel very French)
- I’ve found that I can squeeze my leather (summer) gloves over a thin pair of woollen gloves. I can barely bend my fingers, but at least they don’t freeze into claws :)
And to my surprise, that keeps me toasty and warm. As long as I’m warm, I’m happy.
But Mudgee? In mid-July??
Zorro laid out a plan. We’d leave early Saturday to arrive by mid-afternoon. No need to leave until the day begins to warm up Sunday, around 11am. Easy.
Despite my misgivings, I found myself checking Wotif.
And researching things to see and places to go.
Ooh, one of the wineries is doing a bonfire with marshmallows! Now we’re talking…
And then the weather bit.
Friday, when Zorro was due to pick up the new bike, was one of the coldest days in Sydney and NSW in 20-something years.
There was snow and black ice across the Blue Mountains.
The news – and Facebook – was full of images of frozen things that rarely ever freeze. Some of it looked quite pretty. From the comfort of my warm, toasty bed.
Zorro didn’t even collect the bike. There’s always next week. Hopefully this crazy cold snap will have passed…