I purchased a bike a few weeks ago.
I’ve been riding around my neighbourhood as I ramp up and get well-acclimated to the bike.
Recently, I went on my first major ride.
Instead of outlining which bike I bought, and sharing some of the many stories involved in the purchase, I want to outline my thought process as it pertains to riding.
I need to be intentional with my rationale for a few reasons.
With that said, here’s my rationale.
For every instant on my bike, I’m dancing with death.
Subsequently, riding is an extremely engaging activity.
I’ve been able to grip with life in a way I’ve never been able to. It’s a realization that is hard to describe: I hadn’t perceived death in a way such as that when on a bike.
I’ve learned that I want to live. I’ve learned that I want to avoid death. These realizations become vivid when you’re put into a dangerous situation.
That being said, I anticipate my riding stint will be short. I intend on riding for a few seasons, and then hanging up the helmet. I appreciate my life, and hope to live a long and healthy one. Riding is a surface area to experience how precious life is to me.
A consequence of the sentiments above is the required presence of mind to ride.
So far, riding has been a time when my mind is absolutely clear. I’m entirely focused on the task at hand and completely present.
It effects me in ways similar to meditation or a great workout.
Riding a motorcycle doesn’t fulfill me.
I came out of the womb with nothing, so it’s naive to assume anything external can fulfill me. I strive to have little attachment to my bike and anything else, for that matter. If I drop my bike, sell it tomorrow, or never ride again, that is OK.
I’ve been riding for a short while, but have already learned a lot about myself. A high pressure, high risk situation is the perfect opportunity to see yourself for who you are.
I love speed.
As an individual, I need to slow down. Riding has been a great opportunity to slow myself down in the speed of it all. To have patience, control, and maturity.
An open road and a bike are a match made in heaven. It’s also the route to heaven.
It’s up to me to be responsible.
It’s been a really long time since I’ve had fun like I do on a bike. It really does remind me of my childhood. The childlike desire to get better at a new skill. It’s like I’ve finally taken off my training wheels. I imagine the fun will fade eventually—that’s OK.
If you see me around, be sure to wave—the bike and helmet are hard to miss!
Kids if you’re reading this…congratulations to me! I’ve made it out alive, met your Mother, and produced you bundles of joy.
Hopefully through riding I’ve gained a true value for life, have mastered control, come to terms with risk, and have filled the void that longs for thrill.