Tuesday, August 11, 2009

SPC - 'Childhood' - #2

For Self Portrait Challenge - 'Childhood'

I spent much of my childhood on wheels. Following is a random assortment of bicycle-related memories that I don't have the energy to organize into anything with a discernible narrative:

Growing up, my family lived out on a State Highway where there was a good sized driveway for me to ride my Big Wheel, etc. but I can remember my Mom and my Sister going for bike rides out on the highway. I always tried to convince them that I could keep up with them on my Big Wheel (I really believed that I could) and should be allowed to tag along, but the answer was always "no."

One time, my Dad decided to give me a thrill and catch up with my Mom and my Sister. He put me on his handlebars and established an intercept speed. It was all fine and good until I decided to hop down off of the handlebars. Between trying to catch me and maintain control of his bike, we experience a rather gruesome wreck. I have no first hand memory of this.

The summer before I started First Grade, we moved into town. It was a small enough town that once I was old enough, I was allowed to ride my bike up and down our sidewalk. Then I got to turn the corner and go halfway around our block. Finally, I got to go all the way around our block.

My reaction to receiving my first 10-speed bike is still a topic of conversation among my family and there is photographic evidence (think genuine hands-on-head, jaw-dropping surprise) of the event.

Eventually, I was given a great deal of freedom to ride my bike just about anywhere around town -- and I did so on a regular basis.

"Mom -- I'm going for a bike ride" equaled sweet freedom. As long as I was back for dinner or before dark and didn't cause any trouble, I could pretty much go where I wanted.

My first couple of jobs involved riding my bike. I used to haul around a mower behind my bike to go mow lawns and then I got the ideal bike riding job, the paper route.

The bikes from my childhood I can remember:
*Small black bike with banana seat and sissy bar - this would have been the bike that received the old "playing cards in the spokes" treatment. Classic!
*Aforementioned 10-speed
*Mountain bike
*Trick/BMX bike

That is all.

Childhood #2

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