I love to ride my bike because cycling brings me back to my youth. I particularly enjoy riding on a variety of terrain, from open paved streets to dense forested trails. Recently, I went on a very long bike ride through city streets into the woods. Seeing nature always beckons me forth as it nurtures my inner child and instills great wonder and curiosity.
The trail leading in was soft and muddy having rained heavily the day before. Small rivers littered the path along with the occasional deep puddle. None were too deep though for me to pedal through and it was not long before I encountered a fork in the path, pointing to the “Flying Wheel” trail. The name conjured up visions of myself and my bike flying freely down the hill, with wheels magically taking flight. It seemed like an adventure too good to pass up on.
I launched into the trail and it was not long before I realized the hazards of my decision. All wood surfaces were extremely slick, making it difficult to control my bike. The experience made me realize that life is just like the Flying Wheel trail. Sometimes you have control and other times you don’t. Obstacles and barriers arise as twists and turns present themselves, dips and drops appear out of no where, and bridges and boulders abruptly command your attention. Sometimes I needed to relinquish control and simply steer myself to safety and other times, I needed to use all of my skills and senses to complete the ride intact.
The sight of bear dung did not alarm me, at least not until I saw another 5 or 6 mounds. To avoid confrontation and growing fear, I made noises and sang a positive mantra out loud: “The road is approaching soon! The road is approaching soon!”. Sure enough, the road appeared within minutes and as I pedaled happily out of the forest, I looked back to see an incredible sight. A very large and healthy looking black bear lumbered across the road. I was thrilled to see it from a distance and happy that I was not his next meal!
The moral of the story? Life is an adventure. Make it a fun and rewarding journey where you can look back and marvel at the vista behind!