29 May 2009
when things get to be too much, I ride. I get on my bike and I ride and ride. when my head is a mess and the house is a mess and the kids are a mess and supper is not magically appearing as I was hoping maybe it would, I head for the garage. this is where my favorite bike waits. if I can, I ride during magic hour when the long legs of daylight stretch out before me and the tops of the houses glow. I pedal as fast as I can. I pedal, coast and repeat, pedal, coast and repeat. the bike rattles and creaks like an old carnival ride which makes me love her about a hundred times more than I already do.
I ride past manicured yards and the unruly ones, past papery poppies and complicated irises, past my favorite turquoise house and the convenience store on the corner. I collect the scents of the neighborhood as I go. grilled beef from the vietnamese restaurant down the street, laundry drying in a basement, grass wet from sprinklers, hints of honeysuckle. discarded items sit in jumbles at the end of driveways in anticipation of trash day. a broken shovel, a tangle of white tubing, a seatless tricycle, a metal shoe rack that has obviously been replaced by a shinier, more promising shoe rack. they are headed for the dump but remain oddly hopeful. past trash and recycling bins I ride, past a little league game in full swish and the school playground, onto familiar and unfamiliar streets. I am always changing my route. I never take the same way twice.
it's been exactly one year since I bought this bike. and it's best eighty dollars I've ever spent. because when I ride, things fall away. when I ride, it feels a little like flying. and when I get home, dinner still needs to be made, messes still need to be cleaned up, deadlines still wait but I am a thousand pounds lighter and my mind is quiet. definitely worth the eighty dollars. plus all the rest of the money in the world and then some.
p.s. all this riding has me dreaming of bicycle accessories. checkit, it's my magic three.