Life is like riding a bicycle.
Honestly, there was no prompter off-stage when Jenny said to me this morning: “Let’s get the tandem out and cycle somewhere for lunch”. As I picked myself up from the kitchen vinyl, I looked out at the bright sunshine and simply had to agree with her……this was a day for cycling somewhere for a pub lunch….after all, it was my day for cooking
Now the tandem had been hibernating for the past 4 months in the garage, so the dust and cobwebs of its winter inactivity had to be brushed off, chains and gears lubed up, tyres inflated, and a general check that everything was as it should be. The conditions were perfect. Cloudless sky, a gentle breeze, cool temperatures……so good, in fact that, now’s the time to unearth some of those time-honoured statements, made by notable figures in the past, that helped to improve the ‘street-cred’ of cycling:
Albert Einstein is credited with this: Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving.
And this from H.G.Wells: Whenever I see an adult on a bicycle, I have hope for the human race.
Even Ernest Hemingway had something to say: It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.
And Arthur Conan Doyle is surely right when he says: When the spirits are low, when the day appears dark, when work becomes monotonous, when hope hardly seems worth having, just mount a bicycle and go out for a spin down the road, without thought on anything but the ride you are taking.
And the last word from John Lennon: As a kid I had a dream – I wanted to own my own bicycle. When I got the bike I must have been the happiest boy in Liverpool, maybe the world. I lived for that bike. Most kids left their bike in the backyard at night. Not me. I insisted on taking mine indoors and the first night I even kept it in my bed.