Another stroll down memory lane

30 Apr

Bicycles never go away in Portland, which has a healthy, and sometimes weird, cycling community. In many places, though, bikes come out in Spring, as did Chris Raschka’s new book  Everyone can Learn to Ride a Bicycle.


I had more than my share of trouble learning to ride a bike. My twin sister took to a two-wheeler like a duck to water. Not I.  My dad did not believe in training wheels so many an evening, after dinner, he and my brother (look Brian, you are in 2 blogs in a row!) would take me out to my brand new blue CCM.


They’d hold it while I’d climb on. They’d run behind me and let me go. I’d wobble for a while then fall down. It felt as though I lived with stones in my palms. If only I had this book to inspire me.

Raschka’s “how to”  text is simple and straightforward. He doesn’t really walk you through the mechanics of learning to ride, but instills confidence. He even teaches you to get back on if you fall off. The lively watercolors capture the momentum of the experience.

I finally decided enough was enough. I was tired of running behind my sister & friends who were riding. One day I got my bike and decided I MUST do it. And I did. Apparently, I had to learn to bicycle standing up. It was weeks before I could sit & pedal, but I discovered what Chris Raschka says, “by luck, grace, and determination, you are riding a bicycle”. And I never forgot how.

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