Monday, March 16, 2015
Ride On Time
My seventh birthday gift from my recently separated, soon-to-be divorced parents was a bicycle. She was blue. She had skinny wheels, zero speeds, but raced like the wind, as fast as my legs could pedal. This gift represented my first taste of freedom, from my brothers, from the block, from my seven year old worries.
I just rode.
The first, Samantha, had to be retired at some point in my early teens. I struggled mightily to earn enough to buy my next set of wheels. She was a second-hand number, black, and heavy. Not a good fit. I kept her for a season and then traded her for the wheels that carried me right through the rest of my time with my mother and brothers. When things got tense at home, I hopped aboard and rode, no matter the time of day. It was not unusual for me to be cruising the streets of Chicago at 3 or 4 in the morning.
I rode to ease my 15-16 year old worries.
Today, four decades later, being on a bike is still my solace. This weekend presented near perfect riding weather and so I rode. Loosened the limbs, freed some cobwebs.