NBD and All the Feels
As experienced cyclists we tend to get wrapped up in our own cycling ways and forget the "firsts". From our first group ride to the maiden bar crawl, from the first cheap bike to the carbon fiber bike with all the gadgets. I was reminded about the beauty of biking and what it truly gives us as individuals when I bought my wife her first "real" bike.
As a Phoenician and a strong supporter of local goods, I bought her a chromoly steel frame State Bicycle Re-Issue. Being a lover of a retro style, giving her this beast, with its quill stem, solid steel frame, and pista bars, was my dream. She was keen on the bike the first time she saw it and fell in love with the colorway, a limited edition copper/orange paint job with brown accents. Needless to say, she was ecstatic about the purchase and was ready to ride!
We invited a close friend who also rides to partake in bike stuff-- and geared up to go to Valley Bar for games, happy hour, and free tickets with the purchase of our dinner (if you haven't gone, you're missing out.). To me and our friend this was a a typical ride but to my wife it was her first legit ride as a cyclist. She was nervous, asking us questions on how to get comfortable, riding slower than us, overwhelmed by riding in the city. Only a mile or two into the ride she really began to step out and enjoyed riding her new whip. She began riding faster and faster, calling out "car back!" and clearing the road for oncoming cars. It only took a couple of miles for her to grab a hold of the bars and be free. Seeing her nerves shed away made me reflect on my own practice, at times I take the experience for granted. I ride too fast, too serious and never stop to enjoy the ride. It reminded me of a lesson I'd like to pass on to you all: on your 6th mile, 600th, or 6,000th, remember that riding is fun, it was made to be fun. Seize the moment you're in and be at peace.