The firstborn got his first taste of the freedom provided by personal transport this weekend as he got his first real bike. Gone are the plastic Big Wheels and his days of being towed behind me in the confines of his trailer. He’s going to ride alongside the pack now.
The bike came from a really neat shop in Fort Collins, Upcycled Cycles. Used bikes that are fairly well maintained line aisles after aisles. When the firstborn got into the store, and was told he could go find a bike, he was as happy as could be. He tried out a few bikes, starting with a bright pink number that would have been great for night riding as it was its own light source, but settled on the one that actually fit him. Some new handle bar grips, a spin bell and reflectors later, and he was ready to go.
We had trouble getting him off the bike for the rest of the weekend. It is an exciting time. He’s able to do something he sees his adults do all the time. There’s a rush of “I’m a real big boy!” to the moment. I’ll miss dragging him along in the trailer, but he is so proud of the bike and what it means that I can quickly see beyond the classic parent gripe of “they grow up too fast”.
Now the phrase becomes “they go down hill too fast and fail to observe stop signs. I’m losing five years of my life every bike trip. Who’s idea was this?” Admittedly, the first phrase is much catchier.