Friday, May 20, 2011

Last night, we biked.

Hi there blog.

It's me, your writer.

I apologize for the extended technological vacation.

But, you see, it's May.

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It was 8:30, but no one could sleep.

Claire had had a nap, Max had a late nap, and both were fighting the good fight against the sandman. Keeping each other and the tired big boys up in the process.

Sighing and looking out the window I wanted to be anywhere but returning a screaming banshee toddler back to her bed for the hundreth time. The sun hadn't set yet on a beautiful day, the first after a long stretch of rain. I grabbed Max and settled on the couch to sulk with chocolates, hoping Claire would settle so I could let him try again in a minute. I watched Troy struggle to focus on spite of the racket, in spite of the screaming and crying and footsteps, in spite of my storming, as he worked away on a built in shelf unit for our tv 'stuff'. I tried to drum up lines from the helpful book I've been reading, Buddhism for Mothers. Impermanence. Nothing is permanent, bad moments pass, so do good, don't dwell on the good, be present in the bad too. My mind wandered to the window again. Sigh. I wanted to be out there.

My eyes settled on my new wheels, the two-wheeled kind, I had gotten a new bicycle for my birthday. The kids stroller we got last year made sense now, since it wasn't just a stroller, it hooked onto my bike as a trailer. I had tried it out for the first time the other day on a long ride with my sister, it was awesome, so freeing, I felt like I had a little piece of me back. My sister and I chatted as we biked, catching up on things we never had time to chat about. There was no guilt of leaving the kids behind to do something for myself, no complications of someone else watching them or watching the time. The babies rode happily in back, taking in the scenery, my kids in their stroller, my niece on the child's seat on my sister's bike.

Wait a minute.

The bike!

A bike ride was just what Claire needed, what the whole house needed. Peace and quiet for the boys to sleep, calm for Troy to work, a bit of outdoor freedom for Mama.

So we went, Claire and Max settled sleepily into their chariot with jammies and blankies.

Oh, the air! The air was that perfect spring almost summer evening air, cool and warm. On my face, on my arms, on the kids tired eyes.

Pedal pedal pedal.

I quickly approached and passed my favorite spot, where the river reaches up onto a flat marsh and the waterfowl gather, the point in our strolls where I turn around before the kids get restless. I could hear the frogs peeping, the birds chirping, a woodpecker somewhere in there.

Past the sound of water trickling, past the house with the pretty stone, past the old rusty tractor.

Pedal pedal pedal. A quick peek. Not sleeping yet.

Thighs burning, I forgot I had decided last time that I need to raise the seat. I must do that before another ride. Gah. Those muscles haven't been used in awhile. I really should have given at least a little attention over the last few years to my fitness level.

I could smell water. "Smell it?", my brain asked itself. Yes, definitely smell it. It brought me back to laying in bed as a little girl, trying desperately to fall asleep while the sun still shone, my window open to the noises of the pond nearby. The peepers, the ducks, and that smell.

Breathing harder, getting hotter, shift down for a bit, shed the sweater.

Pedal pedal pedal.

Past men mowing in tandem, the smell of grass thick. Dandelions. Blossoms fragrant.

A neighbour I don't know nods hello with a smile at the kids, halts his mower as we pass so we don't get pelted.

A beautiful sprawling lawn, how do they get their mowing lines so straight? My I have more of my father in me than I realize sometimes.

Dead squirrel. Brains mashed onto the road. Nice. Ugh. Are squirrels really that big? Gah. Are the squirrels living in our roof that big? It's the size of a small cat. I must get Troy to do something to get rid of them. That's huge. What in the hell do you do about squirrels anyway? I recall with a shudder the squirrel race in my bedroom ceiling the other night. There's still crown moulding missing above my bed. Yes, there's a large crack above my head and there's squirrels running around. I moved to sleep with Seth that night. Yes, must begin squirrel eradication.

Pedal pedal pedal.

A pretty orange cat stalks in tall grass. A girl chats on her cell phone on the back of a truck. I wonder if she's seeking a quiet space too, if her parents drove her crazy and if she would rather be anywhere but there. I remember there.

Pedal pedal pedal.

Sun setting pink behind the mountain. The river shines and oscillates, sparkling pink.

Another peek, she's asleep. Should I go back now?

Well, I'll just pedal a little more.

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