Double E Ride

There is rain coming. A fair bit, if forecasts are correct. By Friday, it should be downright wintry with a high forecast of only 11C (that is a cold day for us, even in mid-winter). But today is pretty perfect – clear skies, light winds of 7-12kph out of the west southwest, and a temp of 11C when I leave the house at 11.30am and 16C when I get home a few hours later. You cannot get more perfect weather than that – warm enough to ride in shorts and a t-shirt but cool enough you hardly sweat.

I take off toward Everton over the river flats, up the gentle hill to Everton Upper and then along the undulating edge of the valley to Eldorado. From here it is back across the valley, over the river on the next bridge down and then home. It’s 55kms all up. We did 50kms on Saturday, so I am happy with that amount and my body’s response for the weekend. For most of 2018 and 2019, I couldn’t ride more than 30kms without doing myself harm. So we are improving….

My puncture wounds are doing really well, too, and I expect the top wound to close this week. There are no signs of infection, and the first 14 days are supposed to be the real danger period. We are now past that. The area is still very tender to the touch, and the hematomas are still ugly purple, hard and lumpy. It does hurt to hit bumps where you vibrate/shake your flesh, so I stick to sealed roads today.

Here are some pics from around the valley.

Looking back toward home from the White Post Road at Everton. My place is about 16kms away in front of you here.
Some sheep in the shade over there. They are actually all sitting on the edge of a small dam that is almost full.
The rest of the flock are out grazing in the sun.
That crop (I think it is wheat) is almost a fluorescent green – wish it would have shown up in the pic better.
Big skies, big fields. That hay shed is looking a little lean on hay – good thing the growing season has begun again! That range in the distance is the Warbys.
Sheep grazing beneath the rocky hills at Eldorado. Still no jets or jet contrails up there – only a couple flights a day apparently instead of 80.
That road heading off to the right as indicated by the sign is the road home. My place is about 3 kms up that way. We’ve actually had some pretty good colour in the exotic trees this year. Maybe the colour secret is super hot early in summer with an early return of wetter weather than normal at the end.

And the video below is how I think a lot of people feel at the moment. I’m amazed at the amount of time people have on their hands, and all the things people are doing at home to stave off boredom. I am definitely not bored. My life is just as busy as ever with work, study, household chores and getting out on the bike. I’m too busy, and behind on things as usual!

This is not the best Stooges song. I just thought it was appropriate. I’m currently watching a 4-part documentary series on PUNK, and so some of The Stooges and The Ramones songs have been in my head on this ride because of that. I never really got into The MC5, Blondie or the New York Dolls, but I loved the Stooges and Ramones (and still do – the birth of punk was before my birth, but had I been old enough in the 70s to listen to music other than Sesame Street, I would have been disgusted with all the easy listening and disco and found my tribe in punk even then. I discovered punk at age 12 and worked backward from Husker Du, the Dead Kennedys, Black Flag, Fugazi and Minor Threat, etc to the pioneers of the genre).

Here is where we went. This is a pretty standard ride for me, but it won’t be once the magpies start, as this route has some pretty aggressive ones on it that actually throw themselves at your helmet.

Nerdy chick in Australia who loves to ride and is accompanied by the crew: 'The Commander' Verne and the 'Mental Health Specialist' Kermit.

17 response to "Double E Ride"

  1. By: Lednar De Nalloh Posted: April 27, 2020

    Hello Nerdy, Punk Chick, enjoy the Indian Ocean Low and lots of rain. We’re still waiting for our first winter rains.

    • By: The Navigator Posted: April 27, 2020

      We’ll take all the rain we can get from whichever direction it decides to come from. Dartmouth Dam is at 47% and Hume Dam 13% – the main storages here on the Murray. Lake Eildon (next system down on the Goulburn) is only at 36%. So bring it on! 🙂

      This dump (if we get it) coincides with when we would normally get the autumn break. It’s usually right around Anzac Day.

  2. By: Scooter Posted: April 27, 2020

    Such good news that you’re healing well, Em. Other than your dog attack, it sounds like you’re relatively lucky – able to get out for exercise, able to continue working. As horrible as everything is now, things could be worse. And a beautiful ride too – you had me until you started talking about magpies throwing themselves at your helmet.

    • By: The Navigator Posted: April 28, 2020

      I’m not sure you could call anyone who has been unwell for 33 months with two different insect-borne diseases lucky, but yes, things could always be worse! I have plenty of other woes, but try to practice lots of gratitude. Right now is the best time in the past 30 years in Oz to be unemployed, though. They just upped the welfare payment big-time, and the payment is not much less than I make working my arse off. The payment in real terms per week is more than I earned until the past 3 years… so no job would not be bad right now. When they take away the extra supplement when the virus is all over… then the payment will be dire once again. I’m still looking forward to when the ease the restrictions enough that we can drive somewhere to ride… there are only so many different combos I can do locally before I’ll get bored!

      • By: Scooter Posted: April 28, 2020

        No, and or course I wasn’t referring to your greater struggles with health over the past three years. I’m just relieved that you’re healing from your attack. That swelling really had me concerned for you.

  3. By: Rocky Posted: April 27, 2020

    Good to hear from you. Great pictures and a perfect music video for the current situation! Glad to hear you are healing from your terrible dog bite.

    • By: The Navigator Posted: April 28, 2020

      Thanks – I hope you have recovered from your canine encounter, too. It is going to be months before my leg is back to normal, but I’m pleased with the progress so far! My body doesn’t always do what it is supposed to, so it is nice when it does!

  4. By: Hopkins Escapades Posted: April 27, 2020

    Hello Em, looking like some gorgeous riding weather down your way. Glad you’re able to get out and take advantage of it. Also happy to read your wounds are healing up nicely. Curious about the magpies attacking cyclists. Are the birds discouraged if people add any sort of helmet decorations that stick up like mohawk strips of stiff plastic or something? Might look silly, but curious if it dissuades their swooping attacks? Cheers & happy cycling.

    • By: The Navigator Posted: April 28, 2020

      So nothing deters the magpies other than turning to face them, and backing your way out of their territory (which is hard to do on a bike!). They will not hit you if you are looking at them (they’ll still swoop, just not contact). So people have tried painting eyes on the back of their helmets, etc. But none of that works. They’ve done lots of studies and experiments. Apparently, only 10 percent of the males (only males swoop) actually swoop… but that is plenty!! Our magpies are nothing like your magpies except in colour – they belong to a completely different family. I usually start getting swooped about the last week of July – peak is in Sept – tapers off by mid-November. They vary in aggressiveness. There are plenty of youtube videos with them. I don’t mind the swooping – it’s the ones that actually hit your helmet with force that I don’t like!

  5. By: gregblood Posted: April 27, 2020

    Hi Emily,

    I concur with all the positive remarks from the others about the weather you enjoyed this weekend, your upcoming rain, and your healing from the dog attack.

    What’s the title of the Punk documentary. I’d like to try to see it. I can’t say I’m a HUGE punk-ophile, but I have some favorites. Sometimes I see so many bands called “Punk” that the term really doesn’t mean anything. For example, you mentioned Blondie. They were fine, and they played at CBGB’s — but that doesn’t make them Punk. New Wave and Emo and all those other genres aren’t punk. And every band that dresses in black aren’t punk. To me, Black Flag and the Sex Pistols were punk. Many others too, of course. Not Television, Green Day, Joan Jett and the Blackhearts, etc. Iggy and the Velvet Underground led the way to punk, but I don’t think of them as true punks. A lot of what people call punk is just edgy rock and roll. I guess I can’t actually define “punk,” but I know it when I hear it. Just one dorky guy’s opinion. (Husker Du were punks. I saw them and I know.)

    • By: The Navigator Posted: April 28, 2020

      Yes, I agree Blondie weren’t punk, but they were certainly part of that CGBGs scene where punk really got started. I do think The Stooges and The Ramones were part of the start of punk. They certainly aren’t what punk became, but I do think what Iggy was doing in 1968 was the embryo of what punk would become. I don’t think it would have been quite the same without that influence. Husker Du has sometimes been called hardcore (maybe they were at the start) or post-punk. There are so many labels! I don’t get too hung up on all of that – sub-genre or genre. As long as it is 3 chords, really hard and really fast and preferably a bit angry 🙂 Interestingly there is a band over here called The Living End that call themselves punk. They are like Green Day or Offspring (not punk, but punk-influenced). I happened to see them live when they were a support act for Midnight Oil and was so disappointed. They were good performers, but it was just pop. But the Aussies love them. My friend was appalled when I said they were okay, but I would have liked if they had played faster and HARDER. Here they are:

    • By: The Navigator Posted: April 28, 2020

      I think if our paths ever cross, much music discussion would be had, and I’m sure you could get me hooked on some artists I don’t yet know about 🙂 The doco is from 2019. It’s called Punk. If you don’t think Iggy is punk, you may not like it, as he produced the series. If you google “Iggy Pop punk documentary”, you’ll get it. I don’t know if you can get it in the US now since it premiered last year, but if you don’t get blocked by a regional IP address thing, it is currently being shown on our free-to-air channel SBS. I watch it online on their catch-up website. Do like I did and create a fake profile and you are good to go (other than the regional blocking thing). They’ve shown 2 episodes out of the 4 so far. Here’s a link:

      • By: gregblood Posted: April 28, 2020

        Thanks for the links. I’m going to start watching the documentary this afternoon when some rain is expected to move in. I’m very interested in the history of rock music and the evolution of various genres. In truth, punk certainly wasn’t one of my favorite forms of music in the 70’s and 80’s. I think I liked the attitude more than the music itself, but it was an interesting period in rock history. The Clash was and still is one of my favorite bands but, honestly, I like their later ska-infused stuff better than what I consider their pure punk from the early years. So when I say I don’t think of Iggy as being true punk, that’s not a criticism. I like Iggy better than most of the 70’s and 80’s punks. (I might add that your metaphor of Iggy being the embryo of punk is spot-on.)

  6. By: Tony Cullimore Posted: April 28, 2020

    Great to hear your leg wounds are healing. Your comments re weather are reflected further south. We snuck a ride in yesterday but today the rain has come and intends to stay a while. It’s also cold enough to chill fingers out there in the shed.

    I know bugger all about punk having avoided it after going to a Jimmy and The Boys session at the Paddington Town Hall in Sydney. All that spitting !! Not at all good in these covid-19 times!

    • By: The Navigator Posted: April 29, 2020

      Ah, Tony, that’s funny about the spitting! I never knew about that until I was watching the Punk doco Monday night. Apparently, the spitting was a British thing. The American punk scene didn’t do that at all and were bemused by it when those bands went over on tour. So it’s interesting and funny to hear that Oz took after the Mother Country and adopted the “show appreciation by spitting” thing.

  7. By: Rich-Illinois Posted: April 28, 2020

    Happy to hear the bites are healing — those are some deep wounds.

    Enjoyed the photos, lots of green!

    Illinois is set to reopen state parks in a limited way, (they haven’t said just how yet) — I’m assuming it will be ok to drive to a park and cycle around — the main issue seems to be number of people in a group, 2 is the maximum, and social distancing.
    County parks have always been open but all facilities in them were closed.

    • By: The Navigator Posted: April 29, 2020

      Yes, we’re still limited to two people and not allowed to drive somewhere to recreate. No easing of restrictions in my state until 11 May, though the state to the north just eased restrictions a teeny bit and now two adults can visit other households. I think it is starting to wear on people since we have so few new cases each day over here. I saw a lot more cars on the road on the weekend, so people are getting restless!

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