Adventure in Three Parts
A Pedal – Part I
Not many among us can forget the freedom of being turned loose on our first bike. It was a ticket to our initial adventures–both real and imagined. I am reminded of this as I watch my four-teen year old grandson take off on an evening ride to Fencing class a ways across town. This stoic kid’s delight in the autonomy of it all gave me a string of gleeful giggles of remembrance.
After the first blush of bike riding in my youth I didn’t touch a bike again until my middle years when an employer bought me a high-end mountain bike as a good-bye gift for a job well done. Those two wheels transported me back to those carefree days of wild, youthful freedom and I vowed never to be without a bike again. That bike pedaled me on rough trails throughout the West often hitchhiking on my old station wagon next to my kayak, or ferryboat in BC or a cable pull-cart across an Alaskan glacial river. We parted ways in the high desert of Arizona where it was nicked by a traveler who obviously needed it more than me.
Funds and so-called duty got in the way a bit and I did not bike again for many years. With a hellish California job biting my buns, I heeded the call of a wee new family member (the aforementioned now 14-year-old) and landed back in the Pacific Northwest. If you won’t bike in Portland–ya won’t bike anywhere (Well, maybe Sweden). With the years piling on I bought a Burley recumbent bike. It WAS comfortable. It was NOT light, maneuverable and easy to store.
Enter the Brompty (Brompton)–a svelte, sweetly engineered little folding bike that handles Portland and surrounds like a champ, stores in a micro space and never fails to start a conversation. This cheer-inducing little machine and I have been pals for eight years of daily riding and nearly completely car free (10 years now). Although we are both showing our age–we still have that same youth-infused feeling of freedom and adventure every time we ride!
What is your first memory of two-tired travel?
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Watch for my next post: A Paddle (row)