Just a ride
I was feeling kind of melancholy after a day and a half of being trapped indoors, so shortly after lunch on Saturday I decided to venture out. The weather was marginal as far as I was concerned, with gray skies, a dampness in the air and the temperature hovering at 40 degrees. I suppose my mood matched the weather, because I really had no plan or expectations other than I told Pam I would be back after 25 miles.
Once in the garage, I had to make a decision, but I didn’t really think about it. Road bike or the Surly? The Surly won out by default. It was closest to the door. I jumped on without even checking the tires, slipped my hands in to the Bar Mitts, and slid back into the comfort of that Brooks saddle.
As I pedaled my way through the river valley, I could feel the effects of the hard spin-bike workout I had on Friday and the totally awesome run before daylight on Saturday morning, but that didn’t matter. I was pedaling my way to a better place.
As I worked on making each pedal stroke a perfect circle, my mind raced in circles also. It flashed between the miracle of new life I had seen that morning and the swirling whirlpool of a place my dad is stuck in. On the one hand, I see hope and joy. On the other, I see only a downward spiral until there is finally peace.
As my breathing, heart rate, and muscles responded to the demands of the road, my mind continued to process the thoughts that raced around my head. Just as my body was nearly on auto-pilot, just responding and doing what it needed to do, so was my mind, flitting back and forth between lots of conflicting emotions.
Eventually I noticed it had started misting. It was only when I saw a couple of cars with their windshield wipers on that it registered my glasses were misted over. With that realization, came the sense that my mind was in a better place as well. I didn’t necessarily have answers, but I did know peace. I knew I was loved and that I loved. I knew that I and those most precious to me are healthy and strong. I knew that I didn’t need to have all the answers. I knew it was all good and part of a greater plan and purpose.
I suppose I’m lucky. I have something that consistently renews and encourages me. I have something that makes me healthy and strong, both physically and mentally. I have a place I an go when I need to get away.
I have my bike.
Maybe it was just a ride that I took, but it was really much more. You can click the map for the details that aren’t really important.
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