I have neither a nautical background nor an affinity for anything that involves submersing myself in water, but flotsam and jetsam are two of my favorite words. I just like the way they sound. They were ringing in my ears this morning as I washed up on the beach during my bike commute to work. I’m fortunate to have the most scenic bike route to work of anyone I know, at least of those that live in an urban area. It looks good even in a crappy cell phone pic like those in this post. Pedaling along this stretch of beach as my mind and body awakens in the morning is always good for my soul, and I needed every last morsel of that feelgood soul-awakening earlier today.
It’s bad enough that my legs were screaming in distress from yesterday’s interval workout, but hauling my less than svelte Surly Crosscheck beast (complete with an Alfine internally geared hub anchor) up a few climbs was enough to have me sounding S.O.S. as I approached the area where I work. At times I felt as if my ship were taking on water and needed to be rescued. Searching for the Coast Guard at the crest of the final climb, I started to think that it might be good for my body to jettison this tank of a bike that I’ve been hauling around for the past few years and find a lighter setup. Yes, the fatigued always seem to blame their equipment – a manifestation of the “day after a tough ride” blues.
My (and my bike’s) saving grace was the sudden remembrance that this was the most magical of days in the corporate schedule: bagel day – the caloric light at the end of the tunnel. The thought of scarfing down a bagel with a fresh cup of black coffee had me smiling as I neared the end of the ride. It also contributed to a state of mind that allowed me to forget for a while that my bike’s density approaches that of a black hole.
So, back to the original question: Flotsam or Jetsam? In this case it depends on perception. Maybe this bike is well-worn driftwood and I’m the one who needs to shed a few pounds? I’m working on it, at least until the next bagel day.