Thursday, June 17, 2010

Thoughts about speed and shame

I had a nice leisurely ride home from work today. The Twenty (I'm thinking of calling it Otto) goes at a pace of it's own. No matter, I just settled in and enjoyed the ride. I never noticed the gorgeous ferns on the side of the road before as I commuted back on my road bikes. There were a number of things that became more noticeable - road hazards, animals and insects, the sounds of the trees and wind.  I was passed by the spandex crowd a few times but it didn't bother me at all. I came to the realization that speed blinds you to the passing details... the wind in your ears deafens you to the sound of the world. 

Then came the hill near our house. It's a good 9% or better grade. There are some things English 3-speeds ( and my legs) were just not meant to do. 9% grade hills are one of them. No shame to get off and walk.I have to admit in my younger days I would have seen it as a sign of weakness to get off and walk.  Now, it just doesn't matter.  I enjoyed the even slower pace for a while, stopping to examine the ever growing verge by the side of the road.  No shame at all...


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  1. I consider riding a three speed as traveling at the speed of life. We seem to spend our whole lives trying to get places faster and for what reason?

    No shame in walking a few hills...I even still do it with 7 speeds and 8 speeds ;-)


  2. Aaron, I wholeheartedly agree with you on this. I think it is why I'm being drawn into these bikes. I've rode bicycles for years. As a younger man, I always tried to justify to people the perceived "slowness" of cycling. "It only adds a few more minutes to your commute" or some other nonsense.

    Now, I relish taking a bit of extra time to soak in the surroundings. And walking hills gets you even closer.

    By the way, thanks for all your comments here. I appreciate your thoughts and advise.



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