I meant to post this a few months back, but it was a hectic period. Between naps in the dirt and dirty nappies, I just never found the time. Consider this a tribute/call-out of sorts. It's Tuesday, and ya'll know what that means...
Funny thing, time. For some of us, it's capital; carefully saved and spent in pursuit of one thing or another. It might be a hobby, or a home improvement project, or a well-deserved respite on some far away beach. For others, it's often a battle to carve out the time to spend with our little ones. Between us, we have over a dozen budding members of the next generation of FT3. They are involved in myriad activities, including swimming, soccer, softball and music lessons. One thing they share in common, besides frantic fathers with freewheel (or foot) fetishes, is a love for cycling. Whether it's Nocar's annual race, or a session at the local trail, these boys and girls can send it. More importantly, they share this passion with generations of youth, going back to the early 19th century. For over 150 years, children around the world have suffered/enjoyed the same right of passage as they learn to keep their 2 wheeled contraptions upright.
My eldest is no different, and upon the sage advice of at least one member of FT3, the push bike made all the difference. Evan finally broke free on Bambi's little orange fixie back in early May. As most can attest, it was indeed a proud moment. Primarily, because I saw in him a reflection of my own early discoveries; pedal power, freedom, speed. A close second is the fact I would no longer have to carry him in the bike trailer. Hallelujah!
As a would-be wordsmith, I am partial to anything written in this vein. My in-laws used to read nightly to my wife from a charmingly English collection of stories and poems. We've since inherited it, and this particular tome boasts one or the other for each day of the year. I have been dutifully reading to Evan, and just last week we discovered the following poem. It dates back to the mid part of last century, but is essentially timeless in what it means to folks like us. I dedicate this to the next generation of riders. While it forms a credo of sorts for current members, I pray Gen2 will take it to heart:
When the sun is shining
Or in the pouring rain,
I take my trusty bicycle
And pedal down the lane.
I like to skim round corners,
I like to ring my bell. I strain
And climb the steepest hills
Then freewheel down again.
That's how I like to travel;
It's better than a train,
Or bus or car or motor-boat
Or even aeroplane.
I must admit to a slight alteration or 2 from the original, but the essence is still there. I didn't make up the part about the train. Apologies to the rail folk.
I know there were mid-week mini ride reports, as well as some back-channel hike/recon reports. If there are others, please list. We can't leave it up to the spotters.
1. 5:45 at the 'squito lot.