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High hopes

I guess I never became the blogger I had hoped for.

I should’ve known that I’d never stand a shot during the summer of actually sitting down in front of the keyboard and writing anything of substance. Far too many diversions, distractions and destinations filled my calendar to make blogging much of a reality. This, despite some decidedly blog-worthy events in recent months. So, that’s how it goes.

When I wasn’t working, I was either cycling or trying to date. Emphasis on trying. In this age of Tinder and Bumble, eHarmony and Match, dating should be easier, but it really isn’t. Sure, I suppose it’s easier to get laid (much easier…) but to actually attempt to make a connection with somebody, that feels harder. At least to me. Individual mileage may vary.

Cycling, on the other hand was a breeze. Vineyard, Nantucket, seemingly everywhere around Eastern Massachusetts, on-road, off-road, I logged some serious miles. You know what, it was transcendent. While the rest of my life was rather chaotic (for me) and disjointed, when I was out there on the bike, most of the time with no pre-planned destination, nothing else mattered. Escape is good. Escape is vital. Escape was mine.

Over the course of my travels, I met some fun people – which should come as no surprise. From Alex and Alexa (seriously!) out in Stow with their synched playlists, to Team Trippin’ in Menemsha searching in vain for post-ride cocktails adjacent to that oh-so-perfect bike ferry. Granted, I met all those people when I was off the bike, but had I not biked to these locations in the first place, the connections never would’ve happened.

The introspection is good when I’m out there doing my thing. I need that time alone, in my head, to sort through my life, but fortunately, I’m also able to completely turn off those thoughts and can just experience the bumps of the road, the scenery around me and the thrill of the road/trail.

Bicycles are almost as good as guitars for meeting girls.

- Bob Weir, The Grateful Dead -

On a bike, being just slightly above pedestrian and car eye level, one gets a perfect view of the goings-on in one’s own town.

- David Byrne -

Pretty Woman on Her Bike • Jim Keliher

It’s pretty simple really: I like women who ride bikes, so it’s no surprise that I like this video that I posted to Vimeo.

That said, all you women out there, don’t buy into the bad press that cycling gets every now and then, all the women I know who cycle regularly have no complaints about any decrease in sexual satisfaction or physical sensation. If anything, the opposite is true: regular cycling ups their circulation, endorphins, the whole deal – so in the end, everything’s better.

California, where the livin’ is easy

Came out to Cali for the holidays this year, and was happy to discover that my bike make survived the flight unscathed. There’s always a degree of fear when I part with the bike at BOS, never knowing how, much less if, it’ll come out the other side. Today we were both lucky, as it appears all is well. I did a bit of research this time around, and came across this post from TheRadavist about flying with a bike. Turns out the guy knows his stuff, and my bike arrived perfectly.

Setup was quick enough for me to build it back up at LAX and head for the hills, Bevelry Hills in this case, where I’m crashing with Kim, a friend from college. Those who know me have no doubt heard me tell the Kim in Florence story countless times – well this is that Kim. A good story to tell here one day, but suffice it to say that Kim was a bit rough around the edges when it came to dating in her youth. Not that she’s necessarily any better now, but I guess that’ll all become apparent over the next few days.

For now though, I got myself up to Kim’s biked over to Starbucks, and now it’s off to the coast to see the Pacific, which I’ve been missing these past few months since we last crossed paths further north.

I think this was my favorite shot from that trip:Jim Keliher Muir Beach

But for context this shot of the houses that have the above view needs to be included:

Jim Keliher Muir Beach

One thing’s for sure, I’m not going to be missing that Boston winter weather this week – if it even gets cold there. Of course, I guess we were due for an easy winter after the nightmare that was last winter. I think the last of the snow just melted in my backyard in late September.

Here’s What I’m Thinking: Writing Is My New Drug

So it’s time to start blogging again. I did it a few years back when I had nothing else to do after my cycling mishap and was laid up in bed, blitzed on painkillers for a couple of months. Sure, it helped me pass the time through that overly long period of inactivity, but it also provided me with an unanticipated creative outlet to express myself whenever the desire struck. With the painkillers a distant memory, it was time to get back to the other drug that got me through those months: writing. Writing is my new drug. It’s been gnawing at me over the years to get back to it, and I figured with a new year about to begin, now was the perfect time to start it up again.

No promises that I’ll have anything interesting to say, but there’s always the shot that I, Jim Keliher, will write something that you find amusing, informative or inspiring. I know that when I did this the first time around, that the words came easily (which might’ve just been the painkilling drugs talking) and that my ramblings helped a few buddies navigate their way through similar circumstances. Keep in mind, this was back before Netflix was available on every TV, laptop and iPhone in the world. In other words, there are far more diversions now, but I’m guessing this will have some traction for you all.

I’m all in on this though, as my hefty payment to GoDaddy will confirm. I’ve cycled through unique places around the world, met a random cast of characters: Archie the cab driver, Paul the attorney, Susanna the chef and of course Melanie the physical therapist are some of the more amusing tales I hope to tell in the coming months.

If it falls flat, whatever, at the end of the day it’s still my creative outlet, my new drug, even if nobody is reading.