This weekend was something of an adventure. Maggie and I had plans to take Andi out for lunch, in lieu of attending her bridal shower. I figured that if I was going to be down in SWVA anyway, I might as well swing by Castle Sri and pick up my mother's old bicycle (this being an integral part of my Lose 25 By 25 plan).
Let me tell you a little of my cycling history. As a child, I loved my bike. It had a totally 80's color scheme of teal and pink, a tinny, annoying bell and a basket with a unicorn sticker. Not to mention the sparkly white handlebar tassels. In other words, this bike was hot shit. I named her Beulah.
So what if I never quite mastered the art of turning around? So what if I usually forgot all about my brakes and would have to skid to a stop using my feet, Flintstones-style? Beulah and I were learning and growing together.
Then, it happened. During a lesson with my parents, I had a terrible fall into the harsh, unforgiving gravel of a church parking lot. My leg was all torn up and I was completely traumatized. How could Beulah betray me like that? She and I never spoke again, and I didn't get back on a non-stationary bike for 16 years.
Flash forward to yesterday, and my mother's old bike (adjusted for height). Fighting my fear, I got back on and, after a few wobbly starts, seemed to be getting the hang of it. Struggling my way up a hill, I noticed that my gear dials did not match. As I dismounted to point the bike back down the hill, I made my fatal mistake - I turned the gear dials all the way down.
If I had been a movie heroine, the entire audience would have been screaming, "DON'T DO IT!" I know this now. Sadly, my life is not a movie (though if it were, it would certainly be a comedy of errors).
As you can imagine, I began careening down the hill at a slightly scary speed. My dad and Maggie, trying to stay out of my wildly oscillating path of destruction, were calling out "stop, stop!" True to form I panicked, neglected the brakes, and put my feet down.
Too bad I was barefoot at the time.
Leaving a thin layer of skin behind, I came to a stuttering halt. The bike did not stop with me, however. That's right - face plant onto hot asphalt. And I would have laughed, if it all hadn't been so tragically awkward.
Luckily, I was relatively unhurt. After some coddling by my mother (she actually clutched me to her bosom and stroked my hair), I was even able to get right back on. Though my dad made sure I took a helmet, and even offered elbow and knee pads. Probably should have taken him up on that...
By the way, the new bike's name is Killer.
And then on the way to Andi's house, my car (Sheldon) got a flat. We were able to get it replaced with a minimum of fuss and went on to have a delightful lunch, but my mom was rather concerned.
Mom: I worry about you!
Me: I worry about me, too.
Mom: Amma, I think someone has put drishti* on you.
Me: Oh you and your quaint, folksy superstitions ... do you really think so?!?
The problem being, you can't remove drishti from yourself. So please stop hating on me, people ... it's hazardous to my health.
*literally, view/sight ... figuratively, The Evil Eye