Global warming been good to us up here… So far.

‘Twas a hopeful end to the motorcycle rally season up north here, even managed to snag the essential 3rd COVID-19 shot in September to keep my ol’ immunity up. Came just in time to see me through the Delta wave, an in person Farmers Union convention, and the holidays with my fully vaccinated family. Then thanks to vaccine supply to the 3rd world being a low priority per usual, roaring out of RSA comes the Omicron mutant.

Being a data driven Gearhead I noted that Omicron might not hit hard but it sure as hell was fast, sorta like a classic Mini Cooper S on a tight autocross course compared to the Road Train the previous strains were. Back a month ago there was also the question of just how damaging an Omicron infection could be- There was some hopeful data from RSA but it might not be applicable to America’s older population. Then there was the rate of spread- A mild case that you could survive with medication and maybe hospitalization becomes fatal when they’re out of medication and the hospitals are overflowing, and in many areas that’s exactly what happened.

Watched the case numbers rise, made a last Costco run and isolated for four weeks… Of pleasure! No schedule, no dress code, and watching racing (Daytona 24 hour) all night if I want too.

That was the days when the weather was too bad for driving, and given that with global warming winter is now a month rather than a season here in Minnesota, I got out a lot…

Where Iowa, Minnesota, and South Dakota meet… In January!

It gets better… Early in my solitude I noted that 100 miles southwest was bare ground, which got closer as that bare ground sucked up the sunlight and new snow failed to appear. Heck, by now that bare ground has grown to big chunks of several states and extended to my front yard, as I write darkness has fallen and it’s 42 degrees and raining!

Couple hours ago, that field is all brown now and the only snow left is some disappearing drifts…

Thus half the afternoons I hop in the Golf 7 TDI, drive a few miles southwestish, and enjoy a vigorous walk and workout in our empty parks-

Days with no races and not so nice weather I’ve been fixing up the bikes, rearranging the shop, etc..

Old picture, but you get the idea…

But most valuable were the lessons I learned… First off I discovered that what goes on in the rest of the world doesn’t affect me that much, thanks to living on a dead end street in a house that disappears into a hill with 2 cars, 40 gallons of diesel, 3 heat sources, and stuffed cupboards and freezers thanks to the gateway drug of preppers, Costco. Next I learned resourcefulness, from fixing minor breakdowns to learning new combinations of leftovers to break the boredom and that salad dressing makes even better tuna salad sandwiches that the usual mayonnaise. Then one night after drinking too much coffee too late in the evening and getting up to pee too quick in a cold bathroom my heart wouldn’t slow down. Google is again your friend, I already knew what tachycardia is, but the Mayo Clinic taught me how to get it under control and calmed my fears without need for a late night 200 mile drive to Rochester. Put on my forgotten Apple Watch and found that even my low end Apple Watch and iPhone could give me volumes of reassuring heart and health data. So got back to sleep, cut back on the caffeine, and with the data from Apple and the internet eased back into aerobic workouts with no problem… Technology is wonderful!

That health scare reminded me that I’ve got a lot to do before leaving this world and I’d best get to work. I’ve probably wasted too much time in politics in an area whose major function for democrats is as a republican vote sink. I’m carrying far too much history in my head that needs to get out, stayed home when I need to get out, and I need to leave behind a good legacy when I’m gone. So I’ve got plenty of living yet to do!

Omicron wave is ebbing so safe to get out again, despite my new van being stuck on the dock in Spain…

Ford, how about European Delivery?

But spring’s coming early (again) and the motorcycle rally season ain’t far off!