The ramblings of a freelance writer, novelist and avid reader.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

A Month of Fundays: Day 23 – Go for a Bike Ride

I promise: going for a bike ride is nothing like going for a walk. Well, maybe a little. I think you have to be more aware while riding a bicycle. Yes, you have to be aware while walking, but even more so on a bike. I don’t listen to music when I go for the bike ride – a bike helmet is a must though. And honestly, no matter how much walking you do riding a bike uses completely different muscles and takes some getting used to.

Biking for Transportation
I could bike to and from the part-time job-hobby and probably be there in 5 minutes, but I like the unwinding quality of a walk. I do bike around my city – Bloomington – on occasion for short shopping excursions or reaching appointments like the dentist. In general, I’m glad to see biking as a mode of transportation resurging in popularity. It used to be for kids and college students only. Minneapolis (and soon St. Paul!) has started the rent-a-bike “Nice Ride” service from April to November every year. I love this! You subscribe for $5 a day (24 hr time if you are visiting the city) or month ($30) or year ($60) and then you take a bike from one of the many (95) locations around town and drop it off at any of the many locations when you are done. Bikes are available 24/7 during the provided months and off you go.

Biking for Fun
I’m fairly certain I didn’t think about bicycles at all for at least a decade between college and 2008. Then, on our honeymoon in the Bahamas, Chris and I rented bikes on Castaway Cay. AWESOME! When I first got back on the bicycle I thought the idiom had it wrong and I HAD forgotten how to ride one. Once I figured it out though the bike ride was one of the highlights of our cruise. The next Christmas we decided to buy bicycles for each other as presents and forgo all other presents. The gift of bike rides together in the spring and summer was present enough. Wow, that is quite possibly the cheesiest thing I’ve ever written. Bleh. I’m really not that sentimental. But yeah, the bike rides are fun. You should try it again if you haven’t in a while. Like today possibly…

This year we added to our bike-riding paraphernalia by attaching a bike rack to the car. Now we can travel with our bicycles and go bike riding anywhere the car can get too. I’m still getting used to this feature. Mostly, we still just ride our bikes from the house over to the Hyland Lake Park Preserve; ride around on their bike paths; and then loop our way back home. There is something very pleasing about having nature within striking distance of your own home, easily accessible everyday there’s sunshine and a little bit of time to ride. I think our circuit ends up being about 6 miles – a decent outing for the day. Hyland lets you rent tandem bikes too – maybe in another 35 years I’ll be ready for that. Apparently I can learn to play bocce ball and rent a bocce ball set there as well. Who knew?

Picture: A scene from your bike ride. Or, a strange place you can rent a bike from. Also, if anyone under the age of 65 DOES go tandem bike riding – no the pedal pub doesn’t count (Dana, I’m talking to you. And I say that because I’m pretty sure you are in one of the pictures on the website) – nothing with alcohol involved counts! Although, a pedal pub crawl totally works as a “go for a bike ride” funday activity; that sounds both awesome and amazing.

Song: I’ve got two today…are you surprised? Neither is from this decade; still not surprised? Neither is “Ticket to Ride”. Surprised yet? I didn’t think so. I’m going with Blood, Sweat and Tears’ “Spinning Wheel” and B-52s’ “Roam”. Oh, those crazy 80s music videos – that’s a fun day all on its own.

Tomorrow: Re-watch a Favorite Movie from Your Childhood

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