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Archive for the ‘health’ Category

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On Saturday I succumbed and bought an electric bicycle.  It is marked Evo-Race and Easy Motion.  I got it from a small store in North Vancouver on Forrester Avenue for about half of what I paid for my five-year old Honda Civic when the lease ran out.  A bargain—the Honda, not the bike.

Yesterday I rode the new bike up the Lower Seymour Conservation Reserve road. Some fourteen kilometer uphill and the same downhill.  Those hitherto steep hills faded to nothing.  Put the bike in level five electric assist and up you go at far greater speed than is polite.  Then coming back downhill, I put it to level one assist and hit a high of 55 km/hr.  This speed, amazing to me, was not the electric assist.  For the assist cuts out at 39 km.hr.  Rather the speed is the result of long, steep downhill stretches and a bit of pedalling.

Today I rode into and back from town along the usual routes I take with my ordinary bicycles: the Cannondale Quick, the Trek roadbike, or the Trek cross country bike.  I prefer the Cannondale as it light and easy to maneuver.  You sit more or less upright and can see and weave in and out of traffic in the city streets and bike lanes.

But it is a whole different ride on the Evo.  I took me but 45 minutes to get home across the second narrows bridge; it normally take an hour and a quarter—half an hour more to drink!   The ride down to the SeaBus was not much different as it is all downhill.  But those steep hills, that get steeper each year, melted in the face of level five assist and a bit of pedalling–for you have to pedal otherwise the assist cuts out.

In spite of what I imagined, you still get a good workout on the electric bike.  It is heavy and needs human (arm and upper body) power to control.  You still have to pedal furiously to keep it moving in the lower gears and lower assist settings.  You still need to move those legs and breath fast to keep moving.  Faster than a normal bike, perhaps, but an equal physical workout over an hour and a half there and back.

So I am glad I stopped hesitating and at 68 gave into to a modern contraption–an electric bike.  If you are hesitating, getting old, and the hills are getting intolerably steep, go get an electric bike.  It is great and I will still ride the other bikes to keep in peak fitness.  Promise.

And in closing let us stop to sympathize with the Iranian blogger Farshid Fathi and the Saudi Arabian blogger Raif Badawi both of whom are sentenced to and have been flogged and imprisoned for blogging.  I have done in a secular sense what they did otherwise.  So now I blog poetry and electric bikes.  Makes you wonder?

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As a US taxpayer I am at loss to understand how $1 million dollars can be sent to Peru to deal with illegal mining.  Here is a link to one report on the US taxpayer-funded largesse.  The report notes:

The U.S. Department of State awarded US$1 million to the Blacksmith Institute to work with Peru’s Ministry of Environment (Minam) to reduce the use of mercury and design remediation plans in Madre de Dios and Puno, it was announced today.

The United States believes it is crucial to support the Peruvian government strategy to combat illegal mining and reduce mercury use in artisanal and small-scale gold mining.

Where is the Tea Party when we need them?   Have they nothing to say about this blatant waste of money to support a lousy government unable to manage it own affairs?  The only explanation I can come up with is that somebody related to somebody or indebted to somebody has managed to arrange this and is being paid a considerable percentage of the funds.  Smells rank & corrupt to me. (more…)

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Only one things gives me great pleasure and intense enjoyment: riding my bicycle. This morning it was drizzling as I opened the front door.  Undeterred, I mounted my bike and headed out into the soft waters making the sky & sound. Click to the upper gears and speed down the road past new, cramped townhouses.  Over asphalt and cut logs, cut to make way for a new bridge.  Bounce over the gravel alongside the river and salmon spawning habitat, to the main road clogged with trucks and cars. (more…)

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I was always healthy until I visited the doctor for a checkup.  Then they found all sorts of things wrong with me:  internal components not working; high levels of this and that and consequential concerns; indications of too much drink and smoking; blood pressure where it should not be;  weight too high; and so on.  Although I did loose some fifteen lbs on my recent trip to Peru and Chile. Maybe not enough alcohol,  lots of walking, and all that terrible Peruvian food.  How can you like raw fish in vinegar; black potatoes in squid ink; or slimy muscles in red pepper?  I cannot and probably ate too little. (more…)

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I never, well hardly ever, post the writings of others on this blog. Except when I quote whole scale from a report I like. (more…)

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Most consultants work from large towns and cities.  Most mines are distant in some far place.  Some lucky consultants may be able to drive to the mine site.  Most consultants have to fly and spend a day or weeks away from home.   Here are some tips on those long flights from the city to the distant mine. (more…)

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Just published is a comprehensive report from The Mining Association of Canada.   At this link you can download a copy of Revenues to Governments from the Canadian Mineral Sector 2002-2011 as prepared by ENTRANS Policy Research Group Inc.   I recommend it if you want detail and facts on the immense contribution of the mining industry to the taxman. (more…)

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