I stood in my bicycle shop today, ready to take ta-pocketa home. My road bike has served me well for twenty years, but there have been issues. First the practical stuff: My bike is too big for me. I wasn’t fitted correctly in 1997. And then there’s the skinny road tires. Ever since the tendon transfer surgery in 2003, my balance has been off and the tires allow precious little room for error. Second the emotional stuff: My few days in the Tour du Canada zapped me. I didn’t have the bike skills for downtown Vancouver and the semitrailers whizzing by on the highway terrified me.
Ta-pocketa has been part of me for so long. But so had the home I shared with Jody in Union, Ontario. A year after she died, I knew that I had to leave. It was too heartrending to sit in the family room and imagine her cooking in the kitchen. The chapter was over, and so I moved to Belmont. I stared at ta-pocketa this afternoon and realized that this chapter was done too. I need to be more stable on the bicycle. I need to diminish my fear on the bicycle. I need Betty.
Betty is the hybrid bike I bought a few months ago, fully capable of carrying me over the gravel roads near Belmont, plus the many paved ones. I’ve never ridden her.
“Goodbye, ta-pocketa. Thank you for the journey.” I told Sygnan to sell my dear friend – $1000 firm. I placed my hand on her top tube and remembered the good times. But those times aren’t now. I’m older and not as able as I once was.
The future is pulling me. I sense that it will include cycling, but a slower version, on country roads. No hurry to get anywhere. Just enjoying the rhythm of Betty and me.
We must let go of the life we have planned
So as to accept the one that is waiting for us