The days are getting shorter, which means that by the end of next week I won’t be able to bike before work, also most likely I won’t be able to use our new outdoor gym in the morning – I do not like biking in the dark and wandering around in the dark :).
On Thursday, I was working from home, which allowed me to go to the casual bike ride with the Palatine bike club, and it was the last time this season. I can’t make it to Mike’s Bike shop by 6-30 if I am not working from home. And next week the rides will start 15 minutes earlier, and in another two weeks, they will be starting at 6 PM. But I was so glad I went. Also, that was the first time I took Boris there. I was hoping he will love riding with the group, for the same reason I do – it’s much safer, especially if you have vision issues. So he went with us, and he liked it. Even more, than I thought :). We also stopped at Dairy Queen at the end of the ride for some ice-cream, which added to the right impression, I guess.
But still, working from home these days feels more stressful than in the office, and I thought that I didn’t have time for anything. By now (Saturday night) I feel much better, but I need to figure out how to be not such a slave of schedule.
Unlike all normal people, I didn’t learn to bike when I was a child. Taking off the training wheels didn’t work with me, and my mom didn’t consider this skill a priority. Later, some of my friends made attempts to teach me, and I remember at least two of those. Both ended up with no success, and I was pronounced unfit for biking. I was of the same opinion on this subject; you might not believe me, but I was sure that there are two things I will never learn: to ride a bike and to take pictures. Go figure :).
When we’ve moved to the US, Boris taught all my children how to ride a bike (actually, Anna might have mastered it while still in Russia, but I can’t remember now). And then he started to teach me :). I was so afraid to start this process one more time that he suggested I use Anna’s 12-inch bike first, and I did.
Twenty years later, I can’t imagine my life without biking. In fact, during my after-surgery period, biking was the thing I’ve missed most. Since I am a very social person, I joined the Palatine Bike Club and started to participate in various bike rides in the community.
Although the Palatine Bike Club has been active for a while, until recently, Palatine was not the most bike-friendly community. Things started to change in the last couple of years, and although we are still far from Madison, WI in terms of being bike-friendly, what we have now (bike lanes, bike racks) is a huge improvement. Although I am keeping telling everybody, what we should be more like Madison 🙂
This biking season had started late and is unfolding slowly due to the extreme weather conditions (maybe we should consider it to be “normal” now, but I still hold hope it’s an “extreme”). I love going on casual rides with Bike Palatine Club because I am “geographically challenged” and otherwise won’t dream of going on a ride to explore new places by myself. Riding with a group makes me feel secure, and also it always feels so good to hear people greeting you by name, isn’t it?
Last Thursday it was the first time since the casual rides started this season when 1) the weather was good 2)I didn’t have anything else doing on on Thursday evening 3) I could leave work s little bit earlier. All these activities: getting on the right train, getting home, getting changed, munching on something, and getting to Mike’s bike shop by 6-30 are carefully timed, not a minute to spare.
With the ride itself, plus getting there and getting back home it’s 1 hour and 40 minutes of joy, and I was so glad I was able to make it!