So, what do you do to alleviate stress? Me, I like to take my B out. He's short, smooth and dark - almost purple - strong and he loves to ride. Hey, let's keep it holy ;-) Just in case you're wondering, I'm talking about my bike, B. Yes, I named him - the 3rd grader in me never stops (Day 9). I bought my bike shortly after Whitney's untimely demise. Remember, I was no longer waiting to do anything so off I went to the bike store. And I needed something nice -- No Huffys for me. Those things ride like death traps and remind me of that wooden roller coaster at Kings Dominion. You know the one that seems like a good idea until you actually ride it.
Now, just in case you don't know me personally, I'm not that tall - 4'9" to be exact. So, I needed something fancy that fit. I ended up with a Trek 7.2 and it set me back a small fortune but the moment I took it out for a ride, I knew it was perfect for me. It definitely met the cuteness factor but who knew a bike could ride like a caddy. I couldn't wait to take it out for a spin. My first few rides were exploratory - just around the neighborhood. I didn't want to venture out too far in the event I got tired. Next time out, I rode a little further. Within a month, I had made play dates to ride w/other folks. I rode with my Roomdog (Day 2), friends at work and solo. At first, I thought it was the camaraderie that made it fun. Or perhaps it was the uncrustables as a recovery treat?
But it didn't matter, I simply enjoyed riding. When I tell you riding made me feel ... it made me feel alive. It made the outdoors a little richer. I saw blue jays and cardinals. I noticed the trees as I rode by and it left me calmer. A bad day at work could be transformed in to a two-wheeled adventure by the time I got home. First, I had to put on my biking gear so that drivers could see me on the road but wearing those colors put me in a straight good mood and I hadn't even left the house. Next was my music - oh, yes one must have music to accompany any outdoor adventure. No headphones for me, I have a fancy contraption that holds my iPhone. Turn up the volume and voila -- it's a party on wheels. You should see folks starting at me when I ride by blaring Anita Baker or Regina Belle.
You see bike riding for me was yet another metaphor for life. You start out close to home .. making your way ... exploring, wondering what's over the horizon. Yes, you're unsure of what you'll discover but you're willing to take the risk for the reward. Can you actually make it? Maybe, maybe not but what hidden treasures await you. You don't have to be a speed demon, just take it slow and steady. When you get to a rough spot, you just hold on a little firmer to the handle bars, but you keep on pedaling. Sometimes you don't know where you'll end up or what you'll find but you'll feel accomplished for the attempt, you see the important thing is to try.
Now, using bike riding as a metaphor for life may not change your circumstance or even move you. But for me, it helps me to remember to always enjoy the ride.
So on Day 18 of 40 days of gratefulness, I'm grateful for my bike, B. #beblessed #40daysofgratefulness