a long time ago someone said i had magic hands. i smiled as i tried to understand what she meant. these days my hands are a little wiser and i start to pay attention and understand a little.
a builder said that the hands is an extension of the mind; that they are the most perfect instruments. i can build wheels and websites with them. i can cook with my hands or lull my girlfriend to sleep with them. i can make music with them. some say that’s magic.
i have this straight line running across my palm. i know very, very few people have that. they say its part of the magic and that i “feel” more because of it. is this really true? do you have a line like that?
… what cyril said …
my thanks to prolly for catching this one
i am simplifying my riding. i am taking out the stuff from my bike that i don’t really use or need in order to ride it. first to go are the gears. for now, i only need one. when the gears go so does the front, rear derailers and shift cables. the shift lever also goes to storage as soon as i can get shift cable guides to cover up the shift lever bosses.
don’t get me wrong. i know the value of having plenty of gears especially on rolling roads. but the streets of manila are mostly flat and, after my episodes, i find it a little difficult to reach down to change gears without making the bike wobble—i still have those old school downtube shift levers.
i’m not going for a fixed gear. i don’t have the frame and the bravery for it yet so its a single speed for now. i’ve just finished making the rear wheel and the front wheel has been completed and mounted. i just have to do one last ride on the old setup then its on to simplified riding.
i got my hands on a 16t cog and locking this afternoon from hocus. these things are not exactly readily available. my thanks to andrei.
i’ve also started to build my second wheel which should be easy since the front wheel is a lot less complicated than the rear.
this little endeavour is starting to be a conversion project but it’s okay. it’ll keep the hands and mind from being idle.
two fixies in a place in malugay, makati.
this photo has been making the rounds lately. and i have been overly preoccupied with bikes—specifically bike wheels—as of late. i even cleaned my bike and have been riding in my head for some kilometers now. but i really have to start biking on asphalt for real.
i’m actually looking for mavic cxp22s in 700c but can’t seem to find them yet. if you know where i can get them cheap please send me mail.
its the place where they cross going to or from either side of the ether. most of these gates look like obvious passages—appearing as doors or real gates. some are almost unnoticeable being hidden as trees or large rocks. but all the gates have one thing in common—they always have two “pillars” with symbols and inscriptions written in an aged, almost forgotten language.
most of these gates have their own guardians who keep track of who or what comes and goes. they’re also responsible for keeping the gates hidden away from prying eyes which should be easier these days. many people have forgotten how to see beyond what their sight shows them.
it was just my luck that my nana was one of those keepers. i often would help her clean up at the end of the day and in exchange she would tell me stories of the people she has met and the places that she’s set foot on. her stories always held me in fascination.
i was with her one summer solstice night several years ago when naala arrived through the gate. there were only a handful of folks who crossed that day and she as the last to arrive. as soon as she saw me she gave me an angry, piercing stare like i wasn’t suppose to exist.
she just stopped long enough to acknowledge my nana with a nod and then she was gone.
my nana looked at me, “what did you do? she looked angry at you.”
“nothing. i didn’t do anything.” and i looked back at where she was standing last.
nana just said, “mmmmm…” and went back to cooking the rice.
the solstice is almost here. the old waypoints are becoming clearer and the signs are beginning to appear one by one.
the passes will open soon.
its not difficult to see the solstice signals especially if you’re seeking them out. they don’t really make any effort hide themselves. most of the time you’ll see it in and around the lakes—especially at the big lake. sometimes the surface of the water almost becomes like a looking glass and you can’t see anything below. its as if you’re looking up from below the surface of the water.
from the appearance of the first sign the visit preparations starts. most of them usually pack light going for a quick look just to see what’s it like on the other side of the mirror and they go back before the moon sets. some only have short visits sharing only a meal or two with very old friends or family. less than a handful stay until the next solstice.
he pauses and stops to look at his day’s handiwork and at the lake he loves.
“you are clean again,” he whispers to himself.
he breathes the lake’s fresh breath and affords himself a faint smile as if he was just kissed.
with a sack full of twigs, leaves and litter on his back he takes his leave of the lake and trudges off toward his hut not more than a stone’s throw away from shore.
as he prepares the night’s meal he thinks of tomorrow and he happily smiles to himself.
he will take the paths around the lake again picking up twigs, leaves and litter as he goes. he will whistle the lake’s favorite notes and tell her the stories again.
for now, its rest and sleep beside his beloved lake.
my practice rides have been becoming regular lately—almost every other day for about 30 minutes. getting back on a bike is one of my targets for this year.
i had to temporarily change to a mountain bike because i can lower the seat so that my feet easily reaches the ground. and i’ve replaced the knobbies with commuting slicks so the ride is much, much smoother on pavement.
it was a slow process but i wanted to get my body used to balancing a bike properly again and i wanted to improve the reaction time of my legs to keep me upright when i need to stop quickly. i feel i am making very good progress and i can finally see myself doing longer rides. yey!
today i made 1 kilometer. that is not much by my normal standards but from where i’m coming from, this kilometer is far enough from my 100- or 300-meter practice runs.
i know i can go farther. one kilometer will become two then that will become four. i’ll get there.
the wedding car
San agustin church
we just popped in to take a look at the place and there was this beautifully preserved cadillac in front of the church. the wedding car.
part of the lost rolls