Saturday, April 01, 2006

Up, up, and away. . .on a bike.

Spring is here, the ice has melted, and the highway department has finally gotten around to cleaning up the road salt and sand. At last I can hop on my bike and pedal away.

I like riding uphill, especially this time of year. The leaves are barely budding, so distant vistas open through the trees. I climb higher, following a ridgeline street. Nestled in the valley below, the houses and buildings of Berlin, New Hampshire shrink to tiny, toy-like proportions. Up here, it almost feels more like flying than riding—like Superman soaring above Metropolis.

I slow to drink some water and admire the view. A house stands just down the road, and a dog—a golden retriever—plays in the yard. The dog has a chew toy, a small tire from a Tonka truck. The dog shakes his head, the tire slips out, lands on its edge, and starts rolling. Faster, faster, faster. That tire isn’t going to stop. It’s a good mile before the road levels off.

On my bike, I zoom to the rescue. The dog seems happy to get his chew toy back.

On the other side of town, at the top of a long, steep street, more heroics are called for. I’m coasting back down the street after a hard, fast climb when I pass a yard where a boy and his father are playing with a beach ball. The boy kicks the ball and—oops! It rolls into the street and starts bouncing downhill, picking up speed. Boing! Boing! Boing! It looks like one of those menacing killer spheres from the TV show The Prisoner, descending on the helpless village below.

I barely manage to chase the ball down on my bike. Tucking it under one arm, I return it to the yard from which it tried to escape.

That’s enough rescues for one day. But who knows what tomorrow will bring?

Whatever happens, I’ll be ready. Helmet, check. Sunglasses, check. Bicycle tires fully inflated, check. All I need now is a secret identity and a cape. I can be a superhero. (Bikeman?) Returner of Runaway Toys, Protector of Golden Retrievers. Look! Up in the sky! It’s a bird. It’s a plane. It’s...me, defending the sleepy village below from things that go boing boing boing.

2 Comments:

Blogger eric said...

So much for spring and getting all the sand off the roads. Yesterday I was riding in 65-degree weather. Today we have three inches of snow. I love New England.

9:07 PM  
Blogger Steve B said...

Eric,

Funny how those nice days can be followed by (or interrupted by) the return of winter, however brief.

I've got my own riding blog for my pals here at CU. You should take a look:

Flagstaff Frenzy

12:50 PM  

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