Today's main goal of "get some exercise" accomplished. I rode my bike out to the lake, stayed there a bit, reading, knitting and drinking tea, enjoying the quiet, and rode back. I've finally figured out how to shift gears. I still don't know which gear I should be in at all times, and if I feel I need to change the gear, I also don't know in which direction I should change it, but at least I can consistently change now. It's progress.
I still find bicycling very exhausting.
There are lots of dragonflies in the area. I almost ran over one with my bike. I saw it coming and slowed down, but it adjusted its course to head right for my front wheel and I almost panicked, not wanting to harm such a magnificent creature, but it veered away just in time.
I feel a fair deal safer on my bike after having the seat lowered, and wearing a helmet now, but there's always the fear of 'maybe there's an oncoming car right around that bend in the road', which is statistically improbable out here, but possible. In my trip today, I encountered only one car while on the road.