Yesterday I traded in the clunker for a good pair of walking shoes. But just for the day. Walking to work once a week helps me see the neighbourhood at a slower pace. But I have to admit that when I’m accompanied by my “walking pool” buddy, we usually end up chatting the whole way and I rarely see anything because it’s so early in the morning.

It was really cold yesterday morning, with a biting northeast wind. I was glad I wasn’t pedalling into it. I bundled up in my leather jacket, complete with lining and fur trimmed hood. And I was glad I had the hood. By the time we met up to walk home, the wind had died down a fair bit. And since I was more awake I was able to take in more of my surroundings.

This morning it was back on the old clunker. Today I decided not to wear (or even bring!) the gortex pants. With the windchill it was -10C, but my thicker wool dress pants kept me warm enough. Well, at least until I got behind the War Museum and had to pedal directly into the wind. My feet were just a little bit cold, but again I’m trying to minimize what I need to carry. Because I was wearing a short-sleeved top, I decided to put on my merino wool possum fur sweater that we picked up on our first trip to New Zealand. I don’t wear it often because our crazy cat keeps sneaking into the closet and pulling it off its coat hanger. His little game means I’ve had to hide it, which means I don’t think to wear it. I was happy to have its warmth this morning.

As I cycled along the path, I started to think about naming my clunker. The first name that popped into my head was Clara. Clara the Clunker. But the only Clara I know of is Clara Hughes. And since she is one of Canada’s best Olympians in both speed skating and cycling, I wondered if Clara was the wrong name for a clunker. Or maybe if I name her Clara she’ll be inspired to go faster. I’ll look at her after work to see if she looks like a Clara.

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