It was cold and nasty today and little-kid cycling weather seemed very far away, but there we were at Seven Corners chatting with Corey, petting the shop dogs and sizing up a tiny, red bike.
The weather was so incredibly beautiful this past weekend people were gardening, studying blooms and standing on the street corner visiting with neighbors. On Sunday we joined some friends for a potluck. We forgot, however, to bring the boys’ scoots – or pedaless balance bikes – to the party. They scrambled around and shared with the other kids. Jack picked up a bike with pedals and rolled it over to Leo. Moments later he was on it, pedaling away and waving off any assistance from Sara. It was his first real bike ride.
At first, I stood and watched. But then I ran next to him to make sure everything was going okay. I wanted to help, but he demanded I take my hands off the bike. I didn’t think I was going to really get excited about these things. But as he cruised up and down the sidewalk, I just felt so proud of him for having the confidence to jump on bike and roll.
So today, winter returned. It was a chilly and wet walk up to the bike shop. We spent a few minutes checking out bikes, test riding a little Jamis and then adjusting the seat. Leo smiled the whole way home. He needed a little shove to get started and then he was cranking away. After several laps around the pavilion in the park and an extra trip around the block with Jack on his scoot, we made it home. We were chilled and damp. But as the boys warmed up next to the heat registers, the stories started to come out. It almost seemed like I was listening to my buddies after a cyclocross race. They were comparing injuries, wetness, cold hands, how hard the uphill was and how sketchy the down hill seemed. Apparently it’s always little-kid cycling weather around here…
all images © Tim LaBarge 2010