Terii’s Cycling Babble

Unearthing The Past
April 13, 2012, 5:01 am
Filed under: Day Rides, Misc

Rain, rain, rain and more rain.

That’s what our days have been like. Not torrential downpours with thunder, but that steady fall which turns the earth beneath the grass roots to a gloopy mess that’s nearly as slick as ice and fills the streets. All I’ve done is sit at home and occasionally glance out the window to watch it fall.

Finally on the 11th it stopped long enough to let the streets drain so I could go on the roads and paths without needing a snorkel. It was a completely uneventful ride of about 4.25 miles. Just something to get us out for a bit beneath the heavy gray clouds. At least it wasn’t windy. The rain was making its renewed approach known during the last half mile or so, but I made it home with just a few minuscule droplets on my glasses and a dog that seemed  happy even for such a short run.

Yesterday (12th) the rain ceased fairly early and the sun made an appearance letting the roads actually get DRY. After so long, it looked funny. I gave Loke’s feet a thorough check, which I do daily, but I did it again for peace of mind. I thought maybe to redo the Vaksala loop I’d done a few days ago, but turn north along a new section of cycle path next to a busy road section to see how far it went. There was no sign of infection in Loke’s feet, but I noticed it doesn’t seem the skin on his pads is toughening up. Still, I decided to give it a try.

Though the sun felt quite warm, the air was chilly and only going to be more so once I was rolling, so I put an extra layer on my legs and made certain my jacket was packed. It took a while for us to get out the door. Loke was calm until I undid the brake and off he went. His moment of confusion didn’t last quite so long this time when I told him ‘Höger’ and we flew along G. Uppsala Road until turning on the cycle path winding through a wooded area.

We passed a elderly woman with a walker and moments later, Loke needed to stop to do his businesses. While I cleaned it up like a good Swedish dog owner, the woman caught up to us. She loved my trike. We chatted about it for a few moments before parting ways.

The warm sun faded behind thin layers of clouds and I started to feel cold. Even a jacket and extra thermal shirt didn’t help much. My ears were cold and my neck. Not to mention my hands. That was unexpected as I’ve been riding around in low 40’s and upper 30’s with no gloves just fine and now they were bothering me at mid 50’s?? More than that, Loke seemed a little tender-footed as well. That REALLY bugged me. But he still had high energy and I wanted at least a mile or two more distance that I’d get on a River Loop with extension. So, I decided I’d just ride the cycle-path along the road that runs past the turn to the Gamla Uppsala museum.

No, not construction!

Barely past the turn, I found this. I was delighted!

Delighted by a construction site? Actually no and I’d noticed people on this site back on the 4th when I last did the 10 mile Vaksala Loop. Being uncertain what it was, I didn’t stop and didn’t mention it because if was a construction site, it’s rather boring. Still, I had noticed a handful of men and women sweeping the ground of this plowed field between the cycle path and rail tracks back on the 3rd.

What I saw there this time confirmed it though! It’s archaeology! Apparently, this is the large dig ever in Uppland and stretches in several directions, even crossing roads. Admittedly, they aren’t tearing those roads up, but working in patches. This particular patch was over 100-150 feet long and 30 – 40 feet wide while I was there, but the stakes outlining the area to be dug stretched for almost a quarter mile.

Fascinated, I stopped and watched. In the photo you can see the dark line of what must have been a wall or the like and the little stakes peppered around are finds that another group at the other end of the field were photographing and collecting.

I loved the idea that I was watching Sweden’s past being unearthed. Actually, I spent about 45 minutes there.

Loke got impatient so, reluctantly, I moved on. We didn’t go far though. I’d gone to the gym early in the morning and my legs began to feel the wind we rode against. Between the cold, my legs and stressing about Loke’s soft feet I decided to just go home after less than a mile passed the dig site. I resisted the urge to stop again when we went back by. It was then, just over the top of the grassy verge between cycle path and the road 4 feet over my head, I saw glimpses of another dig site on the other side of the traffic.

All this was discovered because of plans to move the rail tracks, so the railroad company funded an archaeological search of the area they plan to shift the tracks to. I wonder if they would have done it if they’d known it would have led to such an extensive find which could delay their plans. Loke still had a bit of energy, but all I wanted to do was get home and get WARM. I was starting to shiver and felt like I was coming down with something.

Yep. Even after a long soak in a hot bath, I felt cold and shivered under blankets the rest of the afternoon and evening with a fever. In spite of that, I was pleased with the ride of 7 miles though I hadn’t gone as far as I’d planned.

A brief mention of something not cycle related, or maybe it is. I’ve lost 7 pounds since New Years, which thrills me, though I’m baffled why weight is suddenly falling off me with little/no effort. Last week 3.5 pounds mysteriously vanished. This week’s loss was a more modest 1 pound. That means when I’m touring this year (fingers crossed), I’ll be dragging that much less weight up hills! That’s the equivalent of my tent and Loke’s so far! If this keeps up, there won’t be any more mention of ‘a plump woman on a trike’ in my post unless it’s past tense. 😀


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