Rainy, smiley ride home


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


  1. Beautiful. so proud! way to go Leo…and Jack the enabler, he will learn earlier after seeing the reward through big brother. That Skuut is a hearty confidence builder, Rory rode as effortlessly the first time as well.

    after a tag along mtn bike ride this weekend (yeah, the facebook pic), Rory got home and rode his bike for an hour because his older cousins had been doing it on their own. The Skuut is dust and he is going to likely size-up for his 5th bday in June. Gears? Maybe, as crazy as it seems, the older boys were using ’em ….

  2. Beautiful Tim, Who would have thought these little moments could yield such immense joy for us old folks…

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