Everyone says that they’re tired these days. I know of many who cannot fall sleep, sleep poorly or can only sleep with the use of chemical inducement. Whatever the reason, I feel fortunate that when my head hits the pillow these days, I’m out until the alarm goes off at 6:30am
When I think about the times that I have been bone-achingly tired, a few come to mind. At the start of my career, I stayed up several nights in a row to finish a presentation for the Treasurer of the investment bank where I was an analyst (e.g. Junior slave). The night before the presentation, I stayed at the office until 5am to finish. I took a hire car home to have a shower and change my suit. I slept during the fifteen minute journey from midtown to Greenwich Village where I lived with a flatmate. The driver was very kind and woke me by calling my name. He waited for me while I showered and changed suits. We went back to the office. The presentation was a success. I was invited to the fancy investor lunch but I had too much to do before leaving for a three week holiday to Italy. I slept on the plane.
Then, there was the week I went on a bender for three nights with a potential boyfriend. We went out every night after work, had dinner, drank and smoked cigars until late. I didn’t sleep much that week. That Friday, I was going on a work ski trip with my fellow analysts. A snooty colleague made fun of my bubble-wrapped skis. But I was so tired that it didn’t matter. I fell asleep in the coach bus for the six hour drive to the snow. My mate Brad and I hit all the black runs and partied hard afterwards. I slept again on the bus journey back to Manhattan.
And then there was the time after having a miscarriage. The worst of times.
But nothing compares to after having had children. Not the first one but the second one. All of The Things That Must Be Done combined with the middle of the night feed is a killer. I routinely fell asleep in the breast-feeding chair in the kids room despite my best efforts. Eventually, I would wake to the sounds of ABC Classic FM and put full-of-milk-Julius to bed. I would crawl into bed next to my husband Justin for a couple of hours of sleep before the next feed. Fortunately, at five months, Julius started to sleep through the night.
Periodically, Justin travels for work and is away for the entire week. My responsibilities naturally double. Consequently, my goals for those weeks are simple. I try to get enough sleep and have a bit of time for myself.
I’m getting better at both as Justin has had a few long trips this year. Oddly, staying up late to read a book, trolling YouTube, or just lying in bed thinking seems like a treat. Consequently, my tiredness is often self-induced, as it was in my twenties in New York.
When I rode to Omafiets Dutch Bicycles the other week, I was tired. Justin was in Perth for a conference. I had slept for five hours. Why? I had become engrossed in “Half a Yellow Sun” by Chimamanda Ngozie Adichie and fell asleep at 1am. And then my sleep had been interrupted because we are night-time potty training Julius. He woke up wet at 3am and called for me. We both went back to sleep but when the alarm went off, I was tired.
I was riding to Omafiets to specifically try Focus’ new urban bicycle line. I was familiar with the brand as Justin had purchased a Focus Mares cyclocross second-hand in the Autumn. (This was after he fell into a hole in Centennial Park during a training ride and broke his beloved Speedvagen.)
The Focus Planet 3.0+ in Medium was a comfortable fit. Despite the haze of tiredness, I was excited about the hydraulic disk brakes, integrated lighting in the mudguards-front and back, ergonomic grips and the cool black frame. I went for a little spin in the courtyard of the shop. It felt like the right size. I returned. Chris installed a rack for me and I was off. Weirdly, the initial comfort that I felt disappeared as soon as I started riding on the George Street Cycleway. My arms and shoulders felt really stiff and I second-guessed whether I should have taken the Small. I had left my Gazelle City Zen at the shop for a service. I rode into the City distinctly uncomfortable.
Fast forward to the next day. After a great night of sleep, I was much more comfortable and everything was possible. The profile of the Focus results in a slightly more upright body position than the Gazelle, I realised. But it was still easy to stand and climb. In fact, it was super fun. I felt faster as well with a slightly higher seat post. The pedals have a rubber grip as well which meant that I felt secure in my heels. I’ve also adjusted to balancing the bicycle on things without a kickstand. The weird discomfort in the arms and shoulders were gone. It was smooth sailing for the week and best of all? Black looks elegant with everything!
For a test ride of the new Focus Planet 3.0 get in touch with Omafiets Dutch Bicycles.