Riding in outside the confines of the city is easy. Twenty minutes tops, and you’ve left the stopping and starting. Weaved your way through the Saturday traffic of downtown and past the bus heavy with weary commuters and denizens of the “other leisure class” . Now it’s time to spin till your hearts content. Carry on a conversation with an old riding partner, a new friend, or just listen to the steady pulse of the music playing between your ears. These rides are easy.
But in the city you are part of the rat race. Either rushing yourself to work, for morning coffee or deciding to turn the cranks to pump out some earns. To ride in this style means to exist not just in the city, but as one of its vital parts. A white blood cell in the coasting along side free radical spewing red blood cells. Now this. This is hard.
In the city long conversations cease and all your attention is turned to that driver on his cell phone. You dodge wheel eating pot holes as the #12 City Center via Barbur BLVD squeezes you between it hulking mass and the curb. You watch for the clueless banker, mindlessly checking his cell phone and drinking his coffee, as he steps off the curb blissfully unaware of the flashing red hand.
This is the heart of city riding. Yes it can be about the environment. Yes it can be about finances. But at its best its best it’s about the synchronicity of mind body and environment. Point A to Point B (with stops in between) in one piece. Your life and your pride in tack.
Riding in the city can be a graceful as the tip-toes ballerina, floating between the curb and the cars on your left (or right if you live on the other side of the pond) and in tune with your surroundings. Not separated from towering skyscrapers and pock-marked asphalt, but part of the place where you live, adding to the whole.