Posted tagged ‘Schwinn’

“I have recently taken up two new sports: roller skating and ankle spraining, in that order. I am getting quite good at both.

May 5, 2013

The day is chilly but still lovely with lots of sun and only a few clouds. On the way to breakfast I noticed trees with leaves and others with blossoms, some white and some pink. The flowers I saw in the front gardens as I drove by were bright and colorful. Yesterday I had a cardinal pair at my feeder. I hope they make the backyard a frequent stop. Gracie loves this weather and is outside a long time. Right now she is barking at something instead of being inside for her morning nap. The cats, though, are asleep. Nothing interrupts their morning snooze.

We aways called bikes with hand brakes and three gears English bikes though they weren’t made in England. My brother got the first one and his was a Schwinn. He got it for Christmas one year. It wasn’t under the tree but hidden in the kitchen to make it an added surprise. The first time he was sent to the kitchen, he didn’t turn on the light so he missed it. It was the second trip when he saw his new bike. His old bike had been one my parents bought second-hand. I remember the middle section was really thick and the bike was clunky so unlike the sleekness of the new bike. I’d get my own Schwinn a couple of years later. I remember trying to figure out when to use each gear. Three were difficult enough back then. I would never have been able to imagine ten or more.

Every kid I knew had three things: a bike, a sled and ice skates. Girls added one more: roller skates. I never saw boys with key skates you attached to your shoes, but I did see boys at the roller rink. I guess the rental skates seemed more masculine, a bit like hockey skates but with wheels.

When I skated around the neighborhood or in the parking lot at the top of the street, I never fell. Every now and then I’d have to stop to re-attach my skate to my shoe or to tighten it, but I was generally on my feet. A crack in the sidewalk sometimes did me in, but mostly I could skate for a long time without falling. The roller skating rink, though, was a different story. I fell all the time. I think it was the speed of the skates and the evenness of the floor. I’d go around maybe once or twice, if I was lucky, then I’d hit the floor. I was totally graceless when I fell. I went down hard. By the end of the evening, my pants were filthy from the frequent falls and my backside was a bit sore. I’d get home, and my mother would always ask if I had a good time. I always did falls notwithstanding.