And urban cycling
I used to ride around this city like a maniac.
Bike lanes were few and far between. Riders were not separated from traffic like they are here now. There also seemed to be fewer bikes.
Of the bikes that were there, there was a large group of goretex clad commuters. They had all of the bells and lights and whistles on their machines. They even wore helmets. They waited at lights.
Then, there was the rest of us. Red lights were observed - when necessary. Same with stop signs or signs pointing out one way streets.
The rules of the road were more of something to negotiate with.
Now there are more bike lanes. Now there are more bikes. These days every traffic signal has a clump of wheels and flesh clogging up the intersection making boosting through red lights difficult. The cement barriers there to keep cyclists safe have us penned in.
But the memory of how I used to ride is still there in every sinus of my body. I was a bike courier. Paid by the package delivered, time was money. Nothing happened quickly enough for me then.
Now, time is still money, but money has become something to enjoy, with it so has time.
So, despite the urgency that I feel driving me forward, it’s just been fun to take my time and flow with the clumps of flesh and metal from traffic light to traffic light.
The world is changing all around us. While this is happening, we’re changing too.
Here, visiting a city I lived in for almost two decades, the changes to cycling are very clear. The changes in me seem more surprising.
Have you ever returned to a place, a person or a thing and have had this experience?
The experience where your whole body, through force of habit, says GO, while your new framework and the new reality you’re visiting is content to go with the flow instead?