Taking the Scenic Route

If you’ve ever perused my ‘About Me’ page, you’ll see that one of the things I am is a bicyclist. In truth, I’m a great many more than would ever fit on a list as short at that one, but who wants to know about the time I … well, that’s another story for another post.

Let’s begin with my bicycle. It’s not your everyday bicycle. It’s a little top heavy, being rather high in the saddle and short in the shanks. This is because I can only bend my right knee so far, the result of a rather unfortunate three-way collision between myself, my motorcycle, and a very large truck, more than a quarter of a century ago. I explained this to the folk at the bike shop and they very kindly spent the afternoon adapting a bike to suit my needs. Here’s a shout out to them 

Not long after I purchased my beautiful green bicycle, (the summer of 2008) I fell over when standing still at an intersection. (I recall I did exactly the same thing when I first rode my motorcycle way back in 1981!) The only excuse I could come up with at the time was that the bicycle and I were not well acquainted with each other. Once I got that first and embarrassing fall out of the way I never looked back, nor have I fallen off again, which is quite an achievement given how clumsy my first few weeks of bicycling were.

I don’t look like your everyday bicyclist either. I’m not the type to wear snug fitting, brightly coloured spandex, or any other fabric ending in ‘ex’.  Give me something loose-fitting that flaps in the breeze so I can really feel as though I’m moving along. Although, now that it’s November in Vancouver, I’m more likely to be seen wearing a tasteful bright yellow rain poncho over lots of layers and as many flashing lights as I can possible attach to all parts of my person and my bicycle.

Nor do I race along the road as though my very life depended on it with muscles poised to jump out of the afore-mentioned tight clothes at a moments notice. I do have muscles, but they are discreetly covered by an abundance of other sorts of body tissue. I don’t speed along anywhere unless it’s downhill. (As far as I’m concerned, the only up side of a hill is the down side) Then I tend to yell, a lot! Other than that, I amble.

I ride along the by-ways, and bike tracks that are so abundant in my city, and avoid major roads where I can. The last thing I want to breathe are the out-gassings of internal combustion engines, no matter how ‘fuel-efficient’ and ‘green’ they are.

So, I amble along via the scenic route. There’s so much more to be seen that way. That’s probably why I like writing novels. There’s so much more to my stories than just getting from ‘Chapter 1 – The Beginning’ to ‘The End’ in the straightest line possible.

And just so you know, I have never started a story with ‘Chapter 1 – The Beginning’!

*

“Whenever I see an adult on a bicycle, I have hope for the human race”H.G. Wells

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13 comments on “Taking the Scenic Route

  1. Ha! I have a pink beach cruiser and the husband has a chartreuse one. They were the first things we purchased when we moved in with the mama over 8 years ago. Just like you, we take the scenic routes which are about everywhere in our town, thankfully.

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  2. londonmabel says:

    Now I want to start my book: Chapter 1 – The Beginning!

    With the exclamation mark, of course.

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  3. Dana says:

    I have a blue and white beach cruiser. It was a birthday present and I dearly love it. I always take the scenic route, too. But then again, my town is so tiny that everything is scenic!

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    • Widdershins says:

      My bike’s like a beach crusier, only it has 8 gears inside the back hub . . I figure it’s like Charles M. Schultz says, “Life is like a ten speed bicycle. Most of us have gears we never use”

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  4. clarbojahn says:

    Sounds lovely. In my other life my late husband and I biked on the only trail for it in these parts. Our roads are too full of auto traffic for biking now. However one does see the spandex crowd biking there. They are risking their lives and others to do it.
    I’m glad Vancouver has bike ways. Sounds European.

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  5. Patrice Davies says:

    As a human race we need to slow down & take the senic route. We always seem to be looking towards what is going to happen next, then enjoying the moment we are in. We need to look at the wonderful things we have in our life & think, “It really couldn’t get any better then this! 🙂

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  6. When I was a teenager living in a backwater town on Vancouver Island my lime-green three speed Rattles was my best friend. It was the only way I could get out of town, and on sunny summer afternoons I’d find a new road and ride along it just to see where it went. My favourite route was along a back road called Richard’s Road, which went from nowhere to nowhere else, and cut through a farm as it wandered between the mountains.

    To enjoy the scenic route, one must feel a sense of time and space, unhurried and able to really notice what’s around. The scenic route on a timetable is a never-ending “are we there yet?” delay. That’s why the scenic route is a state of mind, not a road.

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  7. […] on the one-word descriptions I used for my Self on my ‘About me’ page, back in November with ‘Taking the Scenic Route’. Which described my stance as a bicyclist. Now we venture forth into deeper […]

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