How I fell in love… with my bike.

I just had a thought.  I probably should tell the story of why I ever started biking in the first place.

Well, my favorite oldest cousin Michal was visiting and tried to teach me how to ride when I was about 8 or 9.  All I remember is that I fell off into my grandma’s bushes and scraped my knee and did NOT want to get back on.  Grandma had a STEEP driveway (at least to an 8 year old), and I was scared I wouldn’t be able to stop and would get squished by a car.  I was kind of a cry baby and a scaredy cat back then.

Then when I was 12, I was at my grandma’s house.  I was talking with a different cousin who was sitting outside.  I decided to sit on Grandma’s bike, a 3 speed she got from Wal-Mart.  I didn’t want to ride it, just sit on it.  I sat and balanced and balanced and sat.  And I thought, “I think I can do this!”

So then I asked my best friend Serena if she could teach me how to do more.  We went to the parking lot of the church building (cause she lived across the street.  #711 – remember that?).  She said, this is what you do, and I did it.  I rode all the time after that.  Mainly to my grandma’s house and back, which was just about a mile away.

I even rode in a bike race in college.  It was the first one they ever had.  Everyone else had all these fancy bikes, and I had a 3 speed.  From Wal-Mart.  And I was so slow.  I was so slow, that by the time I finished my last lap around the subdivision that we were racing around, everyone from the race had already left.  The only person who was waiting on me back at campus was my boyfriend (Dale).

I put my biking days behind me then.

UNTIL….  this past year.  Dale and I had decided to attend Weight Watchers meetings together.  We were going along, doing our thing.  They were having some sort of contest, I think with Dr. Oz.  Our leader started telling us about this one guy who was from our area who was a finalist.  She said, “and he bikes to the meetings from B____ S_____, which is 20 miles away!”  Dale looks at me and says, “I could do that.”

Then he says, “why don’t we go get us all a bike?”  We went to Wal-Mart and got a kid’s bike for Little Bit, a girl’s bike for Sweet Pea, and a ladies’ bike for me.  We went out three or four times, but it was really hard, because Little Bit didn’t know how to ride a bike well, so we ended up being separated with a parent and Sweet Pea in front, and a parent and Little Bit in back.

I said, “honey, why don’t we look into something like a trailer for Little Bit?”  We found what we call the tag along at our local Trek store, which is called a bike “trailer,” but it is effectively a tandem bike attachment, for Little Bit to ride on.  While we were in the Trek store, we started talking to the sales lady (Hi Jackie!), and she said, “why don’t you try this?”

So I did.  And I fell in love.

I like to put it this way.  The Tuesday before we bought my “Navi,” we went riding.  2 miles out, 2 miles in.  The Saturday we bought her… 4 miles out, 4 miles in.

Then I went and crashed her on Monday, but that’s a whole different story.

The only thing that has really stopped me from riding is the cold.  My hands hurt pretty badly in the cold weather, and the wind chill on a bike is something I’m going to have to figure out before I can ride in the winter.

Anyway, that’s the story of my love affair with my bike.  I really have enjoyed it, and I hope I can ride for many years to come.

Next down the line…  racing???


P.S.  I forgot to write about something sort of important.  Remember that bike I learned to ride on, and the bike from college?  The 3 speed bike?  When I got my Trek Navigator, I had no clue how I was supposed to use all those gears and speeds.  I had no idea what they even were!  Thankfully, Google and I had a good little search, and now….  Now Dale likes to call me the bike nerd, because I can tell you what they are, which ones you are supposed to use, how to shift, and I can explain it all to a couple of 10 year olds.  😀  One who thought he had a “10 speed,” because it was “7+3.”  Really, you can teach an old dog new tricks.  Or … at least how to use Google.  lol


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