Yesterday I made my cycling debut. (I feel like there should be a smiley face after that first sentence.)
The orthopedist had recommended cycling the few times I went to see him, and the physical therapist said it would be better than running too much, and some friends from my running club offered to take me out. All I needed was a road bike. And through a friend I managed to borrow one for a couple of months, just to try it out.
When I was still young enough to spend my summers with my grandparents on Lake Berryessa in Northern California, i.e., the most beautiful place in the world, my grandfather would sometimes take me cycling with him along the Silverado Trail. It would have been impossible not to love everything about it: the wine country scenery, the cappuccino before we turned back towards home, the special time away from all the other cousins vying for attention. The way Pop-pop would trick me at the end of every ride into thinking there was something wrong with his bike, or that we needed to stop, so that I would slow down and he could beat me to the car in a final sprint for which he had most likely been storing up all his energy, and which, based on the mischievous grin and sparkle in his eye, was the highlight of his ride.
Yesterday was a much shorter ride on a much easier route but with a much more challenging bike. It may not have been Northern California, but it was Northern Italy. And the way we went was very pretty, lush and verdant, and filled with all the smells of a beautiful spring evening after a light afternoon rain, and I only fell twice. (Again, with the smiley face.)
I liked it. I can hardly wait to try it out again, if my cycling teacher will take me for another spin. (I am still pretty slow, and prone to falling.)
Also, it has come to my attention that, in a little over one month’s time, there will be a triathlon on a pretty lake in the rolling hills of Northern Italy’s wine country, not far from here. A little over a month might give someone, if she were so inclined, enough time to prepare.