Saturday, April 2, 2011

Cooking and Bike Rides

I love my new apartment, especially the kitchen.  It's very convenient not having a huge stove to maintain.  Rather than that, I have 2 hot plates and an oven under it.  So this is what it looks like when I'm cooking:

The space allows for just what I need, and not anything more.  And I like it that way, as I'm not consuming more than what I need as a person.

Another thing that I love about being here in Chile is that you can buy things in small amounts.  Here are packets of ketchup, mayo, and strawberry jam:

When I was living on my own back in the States I would buy things like this in average-sized bottles and packaging, which in the end would be too much for one person to eat on his own.  Then I would feel guilty about not finishing it all and having to throw it out.  What I love is that I don't experience that here.

I've been lazy about it for a while, but after almost a year I took my bike out for a ride.  I had to take it to a gas station and get air put into the tires, but the effort was worth it.  Even though we are technically in fall we're still having sunny days in the 80s.  I took a ride in a bike lane up Antonio Varas, which is a main street right near my apartment.

I encountered the usual road traps of bike riding: glass in the road, pedestrians deciding to walk in the bike lanes, and cars parked in the bike lanes.  Santiago, however, has an extra obstacle: stray dogs.  Luckily I didn't have any encounters during my ride today, but one of my coworkers had a dog chase him and then rip his pant leg off of his khakis on his way to the work.

I only rided for aout 45 minutes, but it felt great.  It reminded me of how good it feels to ride in the sunshine, and the glowing feeling you get from breaking a sweat and feeling the sun.  It also brought back memories of biking around Los Angeles before I had a car there.  I almost don't believe that I rode my bike to student teaching from Eagle Rock to Glendale 5 days a week and would regularly bike from Eagle Rock to Griffith park on the weekends.

Then I started remembering biking on past vacations: San Francisco, Berlin, Munich, Oaxaca, and Barcelona are a few of the places.  I don't know exactly what it is, but I'm realizing that biking is a pasison of mine and I always have such fond memories of it.  My bike was dormant for almost a year, but I'm glad that I finally got it back out on the road.  I'm looking forward to getting out and riding around more while we still have warm weather.

Here are some pictures from my ride today:

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