Opportunity to Show Love

I’ve had two days of bike-i-ness so it’s been great!  Sorry, no photos, but a good reason why.

Yesterday I met Nelle the Bold and Ursula the Intrepid at a Women’s Shelter in DC where Nelle had set up an amazing opportunity for the three of us to teach an Adult Learn to Ride class for some of the ladies at the shelter.

There were eight ladies who cheerfully joined in and we had a blast!  Their class/activity facilitator, Elaine, was so encouraging and positive. She is wonderful!

Because of Ursula’s connections to Important People, we were able to use the Capital Bike Share steeds that were right across the street from the shelter! She and I took the pedals off while Nelle did the icebreaker. Then we walked the bikes down to the river park to practice in a big parking lot.

Well, we were the fools. We should have left those pedals on.  All of the ladies had ridden as children or teens, and none of them took long to get back in the groove. It was like … riding a bicycle!

I wish you could have seen the big grins of happy plastered on their faces! But the policy of the shelter is that only Elaine takes photos, so I don’t have any of my own. But just think of the happiest face you can. Now put a (properly fitted) bike helmet on top of the head. Now make that grin 2x wider. Yep, now you’re getting close. It was such a privilege to watch them enjoy the freedom of bikes — maybe taking them back to an age when life had been much less complicated.

It was a long day as I had to ride my bike to the station, use the bike room (YAY!), catch the Metro and ride it for about an hour, then walk about 1/4 mile to the shelter and reverse the process for the way home. But any day on a bike for any length of time is a good day, right?

So then today I got together with a friend who needs to take an LCI class and asked me to teach him Traffic Skills 101.  Ha ha — he’s been riding longer than I have and pretty much lives a car-free lifestyle.  So I had him demonstrate the moves and the emergency maneuvers, and we went over all the vehicular traffic stuff. It was great to see him again and his employer will pay for my time so I’ve asked them to donate the $$ to the shelter.

I had driven my car (with my bike inside) because it was raining when I left the house and I was meeting him about 15 miles of bike trail away. After we finished the sun came out, he rode off, and then … my car wouldn’t start.  And it was so dead I couldn’t get the windows up. Otherwise I would have just jumped on my bike to ride home! I called for help and my husband set out to rescue me but then I tried it again and it started. I think I had left the lights on…so not much time on the bike today, but still a bikey day.

Hopefully tomorrow I can get photos. It’s International Walk to School Day and I’m going to the local Elementary School to cheer the kids on.  Then I’ll ride up to meet a friend at the station from where we’ll take a long ride.  Ahhhh.

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