Monday, December 14, 2009

It's Just Like Summer, Isn't It?

Yesterday was shaping up to being considerably nicer than the weather boys and girls had originally predicted back on Friday, the day I last checked a forecast. Sunny, upper 30's, light to no wind--a pleasant day.

I was thinking I'd like to go watch some of the madness at the cyclocross Nationals by the amphitheater, and Mrs Elliott offered to drop me off and pick me up later (she had shopping to do), but I realized that I was in a contemplative mood, and what I really wanted to do was sit in the sun and read.* So she dropped me off at Drake Park instead, where I foraged for sunny seating, disturbing no end of ducks who gave every impression of having taken great offense by my presence.

Despite my newly-fused ankle, I found the stroll through the park to be pretty easy. The MBT rocker-bottom shoes are a great help, and the arthritis in my foot's subtalar joint didn't trouble, thanks to meloxicam, an anti-inflammatory medicine that a friend with a sore rotator cuff turned me on to. (I asked my doctor if meloxicam was right for me. She shrugged, stubbed out her cigarette. "Sure, why not?")

The park was beautiful and peaceful. I believe that Mirror Pond thawed later in the day, but it was mostly frozen while I was in the park, and looked stunning behind the trees.

Alas, I found no place to sit in the sun: the benches and seats were either in the shade or didn't face the sun. So I made my way to Dudley's Bookshop & Cafe instead, and with a mug of green tea and a brownie at hand, read for an hour or so, until Mrs Elliott came to claim me.

As we walked back to the car, I asked her how the shopping had been and she complained of optimistically high prices and of having forgotten a discount card back at the house.

There were a lot of people out downtown in the relatively warm temperatures and bright sunlight. We met, by accident, an acquaintance of Mrs Elliott's who exclaimed, "Everybody's out! It's just like summer, isn't it?"

It was, in fact, a really nice day; and I'm confident that that perfect sunny, peaceful place to sit and read is out there, waiting to be discovered.

* Update: it appears that my presence wasn't needed at the races. According to this story, Sunday's crowd of 5,000 or so was the largest to watch a U.S. Cyclocross National Championship.


  1. It WAS just like summer -- the Bend version of summer (high in the 40s, low in the 20s). Today is supposed to be pretty much the same. But I'm not going to get my shorts and T-shirts out of the closet just yet.

    We owe the spell of good weather to the presence of a "blocking high" off the coast that pushes incoming Pacific storms off to the north. The high is expected to break down today and let a new storm move in tonight.

    Of course, maybe it won't. These highs are unpredictable.

  2. "Sunday's crowd of 5,000 or so was the largest to watch a U.S. Cyclocross National Championship."

    Not exactly the Super Bowl, eh? Tells you what a big-time sport cyclocross is.

    I watched the video on the Source web site. Bunch of guys in Spandex riding around through the mud and slush (slowly) and carrying bikes up a flight of stairs. Looked about as exciting as watching golf, which is arguably the world's most boring spectator sport.

  3. As I, a cyclocross newbie, understand it, the point of spectating at a cyclocross event is not so much in the watching of the racers, but more in the dressing in weird clothing, the drinking of multitudes of beers, and the heckling of the riders. Getting half-baked on a doobie doubtless adds to the festivities.


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