Back In The Cold Routine

VecchioJo comes in from the cold.

by VecchioJo   January 16, 2013  




Through the door, keys fumbled with unfeeling fingers, dump bike by the side. Deal with that later. Tiptoe into the kitchen leaving as little of the ride in puddles on the carpet as you can.

Turn heating on.

Peel overshoes off with an impatient tired roughness in complete contrast with the gentle delicacy they were fed over shoes a few hours ago, sometimes just peel down the top half to expose the necessary ratchet and take the shoes off with the overshoes hanging like dead skin. Slough the rest of the clothes, layer by cold wet layer and slop them somewhere near the washing machine. Deal with that later.

Put the kettle on and crouch shuffle naked upstairs, each step more by instinct than feeling as there’s no sensation left below the knees. Feet solid blocks of unfeeling pain. Turn bath on.

Wander into the bedroom and find the special clothes, specifically chosen for their ease of pulling on and soft instant warmth. Wooly hat. Indoors.

Flop downstairs again, make a pint of tea. Graze the fridge for any foodstuffs not tied down, some of which you may have been thinking about for the last hour, put on plate next to toasted muffins and crumpets and toast and malt-loaf and cake and biscuits and crisps and cheese.

Sit semi-foetal on the sofa and gently inhale food. Blanket over knees. Cat, if available. Cuddle tea mug like a prodigal son.

Wait until feet have blood enough to manage a bath. Gingerly sink in, testing each body part as it kisses the surface. Feel the heat slowly soak through to frozen bones. Shut eyes and slowly slip your head underwater. World goes quiet for a glorious moment. No wind, no rain, no tyre noise, no soft voices whispering mocking doubt, no rasping gears, no breathing rattle, no grating brakes. Sensory depravation but for warmth. A slow deep heartbeat and deep warmth. Scum of ride floats to the top. Permeated grit sinks to bottom. Try not to fall asleep. Slow thaw. Emerge.

Just before you get sucked down into the heavy sticky swamp of tiredness and surrender to it completely, realize it was actually all worth it.

5 user comments

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-8°C this morning. 10 mile commute. None of this malarky on arrival- into locker room, quick strip, jump in shower, defrost, dress, big mug of tea, work.

posted by Al__S [855 posts]
17th January 2013 - 10:57


There's no such thing as bad weather, just inappropriate clothing.

(gets triple-layer full-length Gore-Tex coat)

I was told there would be Cake. Luckily there's

KiwiMike's picture

posted by KiwiMike [867 posts]
17th January 2013 - 11:01


mmm, a photo of Jo's used chamois. Lovely.

posted by andyp [1368 posts]
17th January 2013 - 12:44


posted by VecchioJo [805 posts]
17th January 2013 - 16:08


First thing I usually do after stripping off my socks and gloves is lie on my back with my hands and feet in the air to stop the blood warming them up to quickly (usually results in me whimpering in pain for about 10 minutes!)


Squiggle's picture

posted by Squiggle [414 posts]
18th January 2013 - 8:54