Scoot Commute

Frozen icicle hands

Posted in Buddy St. Tropez (Franz Biberkopf), Daily Commute by sbahn on 2009/12/21

I rode every day last week except for Thursday. It was insanely cold Wednesday morning, but I already had it set in my head that I was going to ride, and so I did. Kinda stupid. Barney saw me and gave a honk; took me a second to calculate who it was (man in white van, white van, oh yeah, Barney). I gave him an airhorn meep-meep as I scooted by when he made a left onto Parade Street.

So on Thursday I had already decided I would take the car because, again, it was insanely cold and it’s finals time on campus, so parking shouldn’t be as difficult as it is during the regular semester. About a half hour after I get in, a colleague sticks his head in my office, “Why’d you drive today? The roads are dry.” I really can’t win. I protested, “It’s really frigging cold out! And I got a great spot, right in front of St. Joe’s.” He wasn’t buying it.

On Friday morning, despite the 12 degrees being reported on WRNI, I suited up and walked over to the garage. Erik was going to be home so I wanted him to have access to my car as I knew he had to go to Lowe’s to pick some stuff up for the first floor apartment. You can’t really fit a 8 foot closet bar into a Volvo P1800.

My body was fine. My feet were fine. But my paws, awww man, tortured. I had an appointment at 9am so when I arrived into my office, I was ripping off outer layers like James Bond was in the office. I looked down at my hands and they looked ok (pink everywhere). The tips of my middle fingers have the worst circulation and are often deep purple, but they looked ok. After a minute or two, the tips started to tingle. Not a sweet “I’m alive” tingle; more like a mind-screeching “Why did you ride today?!”, eye-popping, make-it-stop tingle. I ran upstairs to the kitchen and turned the hot tap on full. It gets really hot and I plunged my hands under the water. I figured the pain of the hot water burning my hands would make this monstrous tingle go away. It worked. My hands warmed up and I was able to have an expletive-free morning.

As the day wore on, I became more and more distraught over the idea of riding home. Come closing time, I suited up and walked outside. It was a lot warmer than in the morning (I’d say right around the freezing mark) so the ride home was not too bad. I didn’t take my helmet off as I crossed back over the street from the garage, and my neighbor Jason came over to chat. I stood outside in my riding suit, wearing my helmet, for about 5 minutes until I asked him if he wanted to come in. “No thanks, I’m just heading to the store.” Oh, ok. So can I go inside and warm up now?

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