11.52 - Saturday
Saturday afternoon, I headed out to MotoMarket. I had to meet a NEDoD member to buy a new helmet. MotoMarket was having an open house, so there were tons of bikes and biker skum/scooter trash. It's great how much you can learn just listening to these gearheads talking about their rides, the mods they've done, and mistakes (incl. crashes/drops) they've made. It's really nice to see my fellow riders with something approaching regularity (we went out for dinner on Thursday night, too). Between them and MetaFilter people, I'm starting to feel like I've got a decent network of friends in the area (esp. since tckma and sanspoof have departed). Excepting college, I've never been good at making and keeping friends. This is heartening!
MetaFilter was having a huge meetup in the lovely town (city?) of Northampton, so I had to part company with the DoDs and, with my new helmet, I headed west on 2A. Thankfully, the weather decided to cooperate and I had a lovely ride. US-202 was particularly fun, with plenty of twisties and some terrific scenery and overlooks. I'd definitely like to return out that way, so much hope there's another Western MA meetup soonish. Or, you know, I could just go out there for sightseeing.
The meetup was great; they're almost always held in loud, crowded places and this one was no exception. Still, it was some great conversation, with folks from all over the area. I got to meet languagehat, one of the more prominent members on the site and a very learned dude. And I got to see Jessamyn again, which is always awesome. Jessamyn's one of three people who moderate MetaFilter, and she's so awesomely normal. Not the depressing kind of bland normal, but the rare combination of completely awesome and totally down to earth normal, like a Nobel Laureate who invites you over for milk and cookies.
My new helmet is awesome. I love the flip-face feature; it's great when you stop for gas, or when you want to talk to someone without taking all your gear off. And the sun visor means I won't have to carry two face shields when I travel; one for sunlight and one for nighttime. Bonus: when I commute through the tunnels on the Pike, I can just flip up the sun visor and I'll still be able to see without worrying about debris blinding me.
So this morning, I'm sitting in my bathrobe and watching Mythbusters' 2-hr. pirate special. I'm feeling all kinds of warm fuzzies, even though I know I have to find my tax documents and complete my returns at some point today. I've managed not to think about work stress, without forcing myself. It's good to be able to compartmentalize your life a bit, because I think each part stands up stronger individually in this case.
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