Of bikes and rules.

            In my lovely wife’s constant pursuit to make sure we both die of old age at the same instant; we have taken up bike riding.  You see we both had a plan, when we got married, to make sure that one would not out live the other.  My plan was simple, and purely coincidental. I figured that since Patty is older than I, we statistically should croak at the same time. It’s a bad plan but hey, it’s a plan.  Her plan was, needless to say, much more involved.  Her thought process, like most women, was much more realistic.  She figured that if she led a healthy lifestyle she would live longer. logically that means that I need to work just as hard to become healthy.  If I didn’t then she would become a premature widow.  And that would be my fault.  So it is my responsibility to become as healthy as she is. 

The logic is inescapable. 

            Poor health habits are like digging a grave. I also heard that the first step in getting out of a hole is to stop digging.  So logically the first step is to quit smoking.  Well it took 20 years but I finally did it. I quit because I just couldn’t see myself jogging or lifting weights and taking a break to drag on a cigarette.  I don’t know why but this just seemed incompatible.  Who would of thunk?

            Once I was sure that smoking was no longer a vice that I would resume easily, along came the bicycle.  My boys bought me a Schwinn for my birthday. It sat in my garage for almost two months, un-ridden, until I bought Patty a bike to ride as well.  The reason I waited was fear.  Simply I was afraid that I forgot how to ride, or it would horrendously painful, or uncomfortable, or just make me feel foolish and stupid.  But after thinking about it, it occurred to me that being foolish, stupid, uncomfortable, never stopped me before.  So I would give it a try, with Patty along to make sure that if I looked silly then she would be there to laugh.

            My fears were laid to rest on the first ride; yes it’s just like ‘riding a bike’.  We found that there are bike trails close by and decided to try them out.    Our first few rides were short, only about two or three miles. This was mostly due to concerns with not having enough energy to get home if we strayed too far. We are now we are up to taking a 10 mile ride every other day or so. 

            Bike paths in Colorado are nothing like what I remember in California.  For one thing I don’t remember any signs in California like this:


I find it amusing that there are more rules to using the Poudre River bike trail than to visit Down Town Fort Collins. 


I like reading these signs.  Usually when a rule is put in place, it is to solve a some problem.  So I love to read rules and try to picture in my mind a issue that caused an official to have the sign revised. I especially like #7 and #12 on the trail rule list.  If you can’t kill wild life why are we being warned about hunters from September to February?  What are hunters supposed to use if they can’t discharge firearms?  It seems obvious that a few rules were made in Down Town to fix some problems with the population of differently housed, but who has been patrolling the bike trail and found that there are issues with removal of vegetation?  An epidemic of weed pullers? I think that it is valuable to have places like the Poudre River trail, even with all the rules, it is a nice place to ride your bike with out worrying about a sudden onslaught of running kids, dogs, and bad drivers.  Squirrels and other bikers provide enough excitement to maintain an element of danger.  I like to think that there should be a place for everyone to feel comfortable.  I however prefer the Pawnee national grasslands.  There are no official signs with rules except one that simply states “Do not pick up arrow heads”.  So I made up a sign to represent how I feel about the Pawnee National Grasslands.PNG sign

I ride a bike on a nice trail in the morning, and shoot coke cans on the prairie that night.  What a deal, why would I live anyplace else?



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