This past weekend was a pretty glorious one for these parts. Don’t get me wrong, the northwest gets plenty of nice days; they just don’t always fall on the weekend or during the end of March. But we north-westerners are a plucky bunch and have learned to wear our raincoats with a certain sense of panache.
A few weeks ago Middlest and Biggest got new bicycles and when I saw the price tag, I decreed that there shall be more bike riding in our future. Since then, both she and him have been biking up and down the alley and around the block as often the breaks in the rain and schedule allow. Of course, Littlest is still working on his biking skills so he typically follows along on his scooter. But the point is, they are outside absorbing some vitamin D.
So on Saturday, when the weather gods turned a warm and sunny eye upon us, we decided to head out on a bike ride. I will not lie, the excitement level on behalf of everyone in the family besides myself was pretty high. Mine was more in the area of “meh”.
Don’t get me wrong. I love bicycling. The wind, the sun, the environment, the feel of my muscles working. I love it all. But the last time I biked with the kids, things were more of a struggle than a joy. Getting three kids out on a bike ride can be more effort than the payoff some times. So I haven’t touched my bike in a long, long time. It would be different if we lived near a bike path so the kids could practice their bike riding skills in a non-motorized vehicle area. But we don’t. So any bike ride means taking the bikes to a park/bike path.
I have to admit that the whole process hasn’t made facing putting on bike shorts seem that appealing.
However, times change and the kids have gotten a bit better at pedaling and steering simultaneously, and Mister Soandso was home to help make it all work.
Off we headed on a ride of about 6 miles. Mister Soandso pulled Littlest on a Tag-Along, followed by Biggest and Middlest with me bringing up the rear of our convoy of outdoorsy joy. Aside from my need to worry over Middlest’s propensity to weave to the left whenever a car began to pass her, it was a pretty great bike ride.
Later on that day, I was thinking about the day. It was a day of many firsts: my first bike ride in about 6 years, my daughter’s first bike ride on both streets and paths, our first family bike ride of much distance. But mostly I was thinking about how it was the first day I felt happy, really happy, in a long, long time.
Was it the sun or collective giggles? Was it a trifecta of medication, coffee, and sleep? Was it my one day to be happy this year?
I don’t know but I’m sure glad I got that day of firsts. And I really hope I can repeat it.