Yesterday, as I cycled along the Ottawa River multi-user path, under the abandoned rail bridge, I was alone with my thoughts. I looked over the calm water in what’s known as Nepean Bay (according to google maps). It’s between Lemieux Island and the War Museum.

The water was so calm and the rays of the morning sun bounced off what I thought at first were rocks. But since I’d never noticed rocks before, I wondered whether the water level had risen. After all, just a few days earlier Parks Canada had accidentally let water into the canal, flooding the new $750,000 ice huts.

As I approached the small rise in the path heading towards the wooden bridge, one of the rocks moved. It was a duck lifting its head out of the water, fishing for its morning meal. I cycled in again this morning. It was much colder even without a wind. The ducks were looking for breakfast again this morning.

Although I saw even fewer cyclists, I knew they’d been there ahead of me. I could see their tire tracks crossing through the frost on the wooden bridge. In fact just on the east side of the bridge, it almost looked like snow. The grass was white, frozen in time, just like at Christmas in England. I suppose that means the geese will finally fly south.

I wonder how many outdoor cycling days I have ahead of me. Snow is in the forecast for Monday, but that doesn’t mean it will happen. And I’m torn because I do love winter and can’t wait to ski again, but it’s such a great stress reliever to cycle back and forth to work.

Bus drivers may go on strike again, so I need to be ready. I want to ride for as long as I can because I dread the thought of being packed like a sardine on a steamy transitway bus.

But at least I know I could walk to work, unlike the majority of the population living in the suburbs. Another advantage of being childfree in Wellington Village!

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