Monthly Musing – May 2017 – On yer bike!
We’ve had a rare middle-of-the-week day out today. Both daughters are on holiday from school and
university and my husband took the day off too.
We decided to go cycling along the North Wales Coastal Route cycle path
which isn’t something that we’ve managed to co-ordinate before now, but with
bikes in the car and more bikes hired from a Welsh bike shop, we found
ourselves ready to go with less fuss than we imagined.
I haven’t been cycling for such a long time but it’s true that you
don’t forget how to ride a bike. There’s
something about the rhythm of the turning pedals, the sun on your face and the
wind in your hair that is quite different to walking along the same path
(probably because we were trying to restrain the dog at the time who wanted to
get into the water as soon as possible).
Unlike driving a car, your entire focus is on where you are going, what
obstacles you might need to avoid (such as pot holes, lamp posts, other
tourists …) and the speed that you’re covering the ground which makes it a much
more mindful process than sitting behind a wheel. I liked that we cycled on paths that cars
couldn’t go down, that we covered more distance than I expected and that we
also stopped to watch the world go by much more than we would do normally.
It’s good to do things like this once in a while; cycling is something
that reminds me of being much younger, of playing in the street on bikes with
friends – our bikes often doubled as horses, as circus entertainment or even
stunt vehicles (don’t try this at home!) – and later on when I was in my teens
and could visit friends living a distance away under my own steam. The roads were much quieter then, and I thought
nothing of cycling several miles to spend an afternoon at someone else’s house.
It is of course the rose-tinted version
of the past; traffic was just as dangerous, helmets weren’t even a
consideration and I’m sure far more children were injured than today when they
are safely delivered to friends’ houses by parental taxis. Just for a short while, though, rocketing
downhill past my girls with my feet off the pedals, I was no older than they
are and it never hurts to remember the fun that you had as the child that you
I’m hoping that we can repeat today’s cycling adventure again over the
summer. There are so many places to
explore and I’d forgotten that cycling is a great way to do it. Bike technology has improved so significantly
too that it’s easier than ever to cycle without as much effort as frames are
lighter and some bikes even have electric motors too. “On yer bike” never sounded so agreeable!