“Learn to ride a bicycle. You will not regret it if you live.”

The sky is cloudy, and the air is perfectly still. The morning is a bit noisy. From the street behind mine, I can hear a lawnmower. The operator of said lawnmower does not realize he is breaking Sunday protocol. Lawns are mowed on Saturday. It is a long tradition.

It is only 72˚ right now, and the temperature won’t get much higher, maybe a degree or two. The high humidity makes the air feel a bit chilly. The clouds are staying around all day.

I haven’t yet decided what to do today. I have been loading trash into the car but am saving the dump for tomorrow. I need something to look forward to, and I still need to change the cat litter.

Alexa and I had another useless conversation this morning. She told me it was time to reorder cat litter, the blue crystals I tried a while back. Did I want it on my shopping list? No, I said. No, what, Alexa asked. I said do not add the blue crystals to my shopping list. She said I had no shopping list. Did I want to start a shopping list? I told her to shut up. She did.

When I was a kid, just about every kid I knew had a bike and a sled. Bikes were mostly regular size. Little two wheelers with training wheels weren’t around. It didn’t make much sense to go from a tricycle to a bike with four wheels. I learned to ride on the street in front of my house. My mother taught me. I don’t remember falling, but I suspect I might have. I didn’t have elbow pads or a helmet. Scrapes were part of the learning curve. I always thought a little blood was an incentive to learn to ride quickly.

Nala and I play catch down the hall She starts by bringing me her round, fluffy pink ball with a face and ears. I throw it. She runs then returns it. The game doesn’t usually last too long. Nala gets distracted easily. Usually Henry is the reason.

Speaking of Henry, he came in the dog door today. It fit his purpose to run to the front door and bark at the woman walking her dog. He went out again, and in a bit, he banged the door for me to let him in. I did. Without an emergency, Henry will stay outside that door waiting. I did try to wait him out the other day. It didn’t work. I felt guilty after a half hour.

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6 Comments on ““Learn to ride a bicycle. You will not regret it if you live.””

  1. Bob Says:

    Hi Kat,

    Today the sky is mostly cloudy with a slight chance of afternoon rain showers. According to the weather radar the entire area is surrounded by small unconnected rain showers or thunderstorms. The air is still humid but the temperature is only 88°. The forecast high is only 90°. This coolermthan normal for late August.

    When I was learning to ride a two wheeler, we didn’t have helmets or pads for our elbows or knees either. My father got me started by running along side my bike and then he let go. When I realized he wasn’t behind me holding me up, I panicked because I hadn’t learned how to dismount without crashing. Once I figured out how to both mount up and dismount, then having a bicycle was a big step in both freedom and responsibility.

    Today, we drove to the Dallas suburb of Carrollton and had a barbecue lunch. I had the pork ribs and my spouse and daughter had a combo plate of chopped brisket and jalapeño sausage. The sides were also excellent. We never tried this particular place, but it was very good. Finding barbecue joints that are open on Sundays is more difficult.

    Is Henry figuring out how to go inside through the doggy door? He seems to have no problem going out through the same portal? Dogs obviously use different logic than us. 🙂

    • katry Says:

      Hi Bob,
      Yikes, that would have been the opposite here, a higher than normal temperature. Only 90˚! Ha!! It will get into the 80’s tomorrow. That will be hot for us as September rolls in a couple of days from now.

      We had no safety equipment either. I don’t remember anyone who had any. My mother taught me to ride a bike on the side street right in front of our house. That must be the universal way to teach kids to ride a bike, hold on to the back then let go and hope for the best.

      Barbecue just isn’t popular enough here to sustain a restaurant. There have been two barbecue places and both closed fairly quickly. I got food at both of them. One was far better than the other.

      Henry never chooses to come in the dog door. He has no problem going out, but something about in scares him a little. The only exceptions have been when someone was at the door and when he got skunked. Nala has no problem going in and out.

  2. lilydark Says:

    Hi Kat,
    The weather has been odd here…sunny hot, the last few days, and then foggy cool at night. I don’t go out much except to get the mail, since my car was stolen.
    As a kid, I rode my bike everywhere. Especially in the summer. After I broke my knee and was recovered, I wanted to ride a bike again. My knee refused get on the pedal to ride. I tried several times, even going to a store, where they sold bikes and offered to help me. It just refused. The bike I had needed to have the back brakes fixed.
    A week later the bike was stolen.
    Maybe it was a sign.
    Take Care,
    Lori and Cookie

    • katry Says:

      Hi Lori,
      Today was ugly hot and humid. I had sweat down my cheeks when I was doing some housework and carrying trash to the car. The AC cooled me off.

      I don’t go out much except to uke stuff. There are not a while lot of places I want to go to. I have most things I need, and I have groceries delivered. The house is nice and cool with the AC blasting. Today I did go to the dump, an exciting trip!

      I’m sorry about your not being able to ride your bike. That has to be a horrible disappointment. You’re right. Maybe the theft of your bike was an omen.

      Take care!

  3. Crayn Says:

    Hi Kat,
    My youngest brother had a little bike with training wheels. It was a Hopalong Cassidy bike; Black with Hoppy and his horse painted on it. My brother almost sliced his finger off when he got it caught in the wheel somehow. He was talented that way. 🙂

    My first bike was a four wheeler. It was made out of plumbing pipes and painted institution green. Judging from the thickness of the paint, it had been gone over multiple times. I really liked that bike because it was beautifully ugly and different.

    Jacki Spousta (who was my bestest friend at age 5) taught me to ride a two wheel bike. He was very patient because I refused to leave the safety of curb in spite of him telling me it was better to do so. I fell off a lot which hurts when you’re right next to the curb. Finally he suggested we take a break and handed me a piece of Dentyne gum. It must have been magic gum because after I chewed it for a bit, I sailed away from the curb and didn’t fall off my bike again. That day.

    I expect Henry might just like the idea of having a doorman. 🙂
    Enjoy your day.

    • katry Says:

      Hi Caryn,
      I never saw any bikes with training wheels when I was a kid. Everyone I knew had scrapes and bruises from learning to ride. Bikes were prime Christmas presents and the streets were crowded the week after Christmas. My father and your brother had a lot in common.

      That sounds like a neat bike. My bike was just a common old blue bike with a wire basket, but that never mattered. I loved my bike, my freedom to roam the world or at least my little world.

      I never knew Dentyne gum was so magical. I don’t think I have chewed any Dentyne in many, many years. I liked the flavor, but it left stake gum to quickly for my tastes.

      Your friend was wonderful. Even my mother got a little frustrated. I didn’t fall that much. She’d grab me. It really didn’t take long to learn. I remember how I felt riding that bike with the wind on my face.

      Henry was outside close to two hours when I fell asleep. He ran in after the skunk got him and when the UPS man was delivering. I suspect it is the fear and his need to defend his house and me that drives him.

      Have a good Monday!


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