mad in pursuit journal

DISPATCHED FROM THE CROSSROADS

Earth Day

bicycle

The wheel of time always seems to slow down this time of year. You know good weather has to come but the thermometer is stuck on 40. Then suddenly the air turns warm and sunny and we northcoasters pour out of our houses.

For my outing, I decided to do my bit for Earth Day and pick up roadside trash. I walked up the road alongside the creek. The debris was unsurprising but still made me gloomy: plastic bags, empty cigarette packs, fast-food beverage cups, liquor bottles, 40-oz beer bottles... and a bra. It creeps me out to think of what goes on in this secluded stretch of road after dark.

The day continued to get more beautiful so I decided to work on cleaning up my bicycle, which has stood covered with construction dust for two years, tired deflated. A hour later, it was shiny and oiled up, with tires back in commission. I jumped on for a spin.

Oh, I forgot what a sensuous thrill biking is on a breezy warm day! I meandered over to the creek path behind the strip mall and poked along the muddy trail. My bike has always meant freedom to me — grab your helmet and GO — sending me back to the days when I didn't own a car but longed to fly along faster than the speed to two feet. Independence!

4.23.07

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