Tuesday, January 24, 2012
The Senses of Riding
A dog may not reflect a connection to riding to the casual observer, the connoisseur of mechanical marvel, or the unwashed masses who see riders as fools with a death wishes as they talk on their cellphones. My dog Junior, like my Vespa, bring me into the world, cause me to move forward, at this time of year through resistance and doubt only to emerge at the other end of a trip with a profound sense of satisfaction. Like a dog, eyes, ears, nose, they're all turned on, alert and scanning the world.
The Vespa almost always comes after the dog. Biology trumps engineering.
A ride to work, on an errand, or just an unplanned and aimless trip to no where in particular is much like he morning walk -- senses attuned to the world, sights to see, and that feeling of motion, flying in this instance, but motion both figuratively and literally. It's a potent medicine.
And always there's arrivals. A place, a sight, a location. In cold weather I relish in an almost unnatural way the heat and steam of a cup of tea as no other drink has ever provoked. And again, the senses are focused keen like a sharp knife on every sound and motion, sight and smell. All lost on the non-rider? How would I know?
There are the grand sights and the small ones. When riding to work or on little journies from one task to the next a person takes things as they come. Standing at a coffee shop counter I spy the tulips across the room in the window. I'm certain, had I arrived in the van, my mind would be elsewhere and I'd never have seen them.
Thank you ride.