evening not so long ago, I was struggling over a hazardous bike path into
downtown Minneapolis. Witnessing my work, a fatbiker shouted across the
path's poorly plowed expanse.
"How's it going?"
"Great!" I said back,
and meant it, though I'd almost fallen in front of him. I smiled then
rode on. I wasn't going to stick around to see how his enviable fatbike handled the
terrain that had worked me and my single-speed. With only a mile to go, I
was in animal mode, my eyeballs almost frozen, my body clad in Merino.
This past November, I got a new job that meant, after a year-plus break
from bike commuting, I'd finally have a good route again. Twelve miles
across the Twin Cities. Years ago, biking to work -- 17 miles a day,
every day -- had formed a cornerstone of my soul.
Now, during the
toughest winter in years, I've once again gained a bike commute. Here,
during my haphazard return to winter biking, is what I've re-learned.