The Dynamo Ponders #9
Make it Count
The alarm goes off and I quickly turn it off so not to disturb my wife. I have been sleeping lightly in anticipation of the training ride I have been eagerly looking forward to. I rise and quietly go about my business in getting ready to go: food, drink, lights, phone, wallet, spare tubes, pump, air check, all the usual things. I see her sleeping and decide to let her be as I set off into the early-morning darkness.
I mount my bike and head off to my training ground. I contemplate various thoughts as I ride in an effort to clear my mind for forthcoming training session. I feel good as I breathe in the fresh morning air and my heart and breathing rates pick up. I enjoy the feeling of speed and the movement in my legs which seems somewhat effortless these days compared with the pain I felt many years ago when I first started riding. Fortunate to have a bike lane to ride in for some of my journey, I make the most of it and observe that there is little traffic at this time of day.
Having ridden now for just over an hour and a half, I reach the hilly district, for in which, I have planned my training for today. I start to climb and start to push myself and set into a steady rhythm and try to ignore the pain as my breaths become deeper and faster and my legs start to scream for mercy. Time seems to slow down until I see the top of the climb as try to push with everything I have to get over the top. I continue pedalling lightly down the other side to recover and ride gently through the undulating hills. I ride this 20km circuit three times then ride back home.
The Traffic is busier now and I’m only 40 minutes from home. I’m thinking of some food and rest when I finally get off the bike.
As I saunter home after my workout, I acknowledge a rider who zips past me through an intersection seemingly oblivious to the truck which has failed to stop and pushed a car out into oncoming traffic. A major accident results as a consequence with all of the chaos, panic, adrenalin and uncertainty instantly following. I was lucky to avoid becoming a victim as was the other rider who had a very close call, too close for comfort. A few seconds closer to home and I may not have been so lucky.
None of us know what is just around the corner or how close we have come to potentially having lived our final day. It is so easy to take things for granted. Those horrible things always happen to someone else and we as cyclists just like anybody else, are not immune to the hazards of life.
Over the last month, there has been a number of cyclist fatalities. The circumstances may vary but the outcomes were sadly the same. The consequence is heart-breaking sadness and monumental change for those who have lost their loved one.
This caused me to give thought to the fact that we are here one day, carrying on as usual, and gone the next. Some of us might get notice in advance and others tragically do not. We get one shot at life, that is, from the moment we are born to the moment we depart this world. That one shot is everything we can squeeze in between those moments. Make it count. Look after each other. Live your life the best way you know how. Appreciate those who love you and love those you appreciate. None of us are perfect so forgive any perceived short- comings; we are all different and that’s partly what makes this world the miracle that it is.
“ On their deathbed, no one ever says that they wished they had spent more time at work”.
And another: “Life is too serious to take seriously”.
Every one of us has the opportunity to enrich our lives by enriching the lives of those around us. Be good to and look after one another. This day may be your last.
MAKE IT COUNT.
See you out there,