Monday, August 3, 2009

Winter strikes back

February 4, 2008 - Monday

This past weekend was white. They'd said it'd be cold and gray on Saturday, but that wed have 9°C on Sunday. We didn't. And because of that I'm glad I made use of the beautifully warm Friday night.

Friday was a day that made me sorry to have to spend it indoors. By time 1700 hours and the weekend rolled around, the sky was still bright and the weather was mild and warm. I couldn't let it go to waste. I called up Florian and asked whether he wanted to go driving, but he was already off with Selim, picking up Alex's bike and some parts for the 50. I tried to get a hold of Kevin, but he didn't answer his phone. So, I rode by myself for a bit, circling through Wettswil and Bonstetten and riding in the Aeugst valley before heading back over the Albis.

When I got home, I found I'd missed to calls from Kevin. It was already dark, though, and I figured it was too late to go on another drive. I returned his call, cleaned up the kitchen, finished chores, and then went upstairs to chat on MSN and get some painting done.

I didn't sit long. It was around 1915 hours, and still as warm as in late spring. I wrote to Kevin and said I wanted out. He asked where I wanted to go; I said Muri, and we agreed to meet at the usual spot at quarter till.

We never did get to Muri. I led, and when I saw a sign to Bergdietikon, I figured we could swing by there and I'd show Kevin where the Gun Factory was.

I surprised myself by actually finding the place (considering how lousy my navigational skills are), and from there we continued on into Aargau. We drove for several hours, and nearly reached Koblenz. Almost no one was on the roads at the hour, but it would have been even more fun if the wind had been a bit gentler. It blew something fierce across the fields, and we often had to lean into it to drive straight. It wasn't letting up, so I - still leading - scratched the idea of reaching Koblenz and headed back toward Dielsdorf and Zürich. Kevin took over the lead soon after and found back to Birmensdorf.

Shortly before 2300 hours we reached the town and parked at the Sunne to warm up and get something to drink.

The Sunne is a typical little town bar, where the neighbors get together to talk and Jass (play cards), and it was a tad noisy. Behind where Kev and I were sitting were half a dozen Harley-rider-esque guys in patriotic T-Shirts with their beers and noisy stories. Suddenly one of them walked up and asked which of us rode the Buell. (He pronounced it "Booell," which Kev laughingly criticized afterwards.) I said I did, and the big guy said that was great, a good thing, that he was all in favor of it.

Hey, compliments are always welcome! So what if he didn't pronounce the name right. I thought it was cool.

It was midnight before I got home. It rained a bit, but the weather was still warm. It was a different story the next morning - 5 cm of snow and the roads were pure slush. There'd be no driving that day.

I was actually kind of glad for it. I was way behind, and not being able to drive let me do the laundry and the ironing and invest some hours in the PYO for Lara. I almost half-finished him - I need to do the tail, his head and his leg before I can get his right side. I must say, I really prefer painting the griffins and kirins over the dragons. But this litte guy needs to get done.

Florian and Kristin went snowboarding and tried to get me to come, but I said I was busy. I was, but te argument lost some credibility when Kevin called and asked if I wanted to come to Polo with him and Roman. I said sure, of course. We didn't spend too much time there, though. I was only gone about an hour.

I spent the afternoon painting and chatting with Kev, until I headed to a babysitting job at 2000 hours. (By that time the roads were sort of useable again.)

The babysitting job was lovely. I got there at 2000; the kids were to be down by 2100 hours, the parents got home at 0030 hours and paid me 120.- for four and a half hours of relaxation, even though I insisted it was too much. I love babysitting.

Sunday dawned cold but sunny. We had church, and I agreed to meet Kevin in Birmensdorf at midday. I tried to get Florian to come, and he insisted I go snowboarding with the rest of them - this time Dad, Joshua and the kid went too - so it ended up just being me an Kev again. I could even say "as usual."

I led for most of the way. I actually prefer to follow the leader, but considering we weren't trying to get anywhere, I guess it didn't make a difference. We spent most of the time in Aargau. I got 211 km on one tank of 98 before we refueled in Muri, and the reserve light hadn't even come on yet.

In the beginning, it was foggy and cold, but as the aftrenoon progressed, it warmed up by a few degrees. After an hour of driving we stopped at a restaurant for a warm drink. The sun was out, but it was really cold. Temperatures hung aroudn freezing all day. Luckily most of the roads were fine.

This time, we got to Koblenz. We drove by the nuclear reactor in Leibstadt, and were on the way to Schaffhausen before I turned back toward Zürich. We both needed to be back home around 1800 hours for supper.

It was a great afternoon. I'll chose time on my Beastie over any slopes in the world, any day.

Now it's after 1200 hours, and I'm off to go order the first big customizing parts - three pieces of plastic. What one won't invest in a passion.

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