So it appears that a time zone issue means that we're skipping the 2nd December reverb10 prompt. To be honest, that's okay by me. The prompt asked bloggers to think about the counter-constructive things we do in relation to our writing. I'm not sure I would have had much to say on that front, aside from a) I wish I had more time to write; and b) study renders the writing process somewhat painful. So enough from me about writing, and onto an exhilarating moment from 2010.
December 3 – Moment. Pick one moment during which you felt most alive this year. Describe it in vivid detail (texture, smells, voices, noises, colors). (Author: Ali Edwards)
If only I could isolate one moment during which I felt most alive. Instead, I've opted to describe a number of moments that have all involved cycling. Let's backtrack a little...
While my beloved has been cycling to work for quite some time, as of September 2010 I hadn't cycled for around three years. A fit colleague who lives locally suggested I join her on her daily commute to work. I borrowed my beloved's bike and off we rode...but not without a few teething issues. You see, Mike's bike is equipped with a more contemporary version of these suckers - toe straps (of doom!):
I'm sure such cycling accessories are really useful for the more coordinated people in this world; however, for yours truly, they caused four encounters with unforgiving asphalt within an hour - the result of an inability to release my feet from the straps sufficiently quickly. This would happen at painfully amusing slow speeds, where little damage was done to my physical self, but a tad more to my ego (especially the incident in front of the packed bus stop!). Upon arrival at work, a screwdriver was immediately located and the offending straps removed. The ride home was fantastic and I decided then and there that I was going to purchase my own two-wheeler. *Cue entry: the Silver Sensation*.
I cannot explain how much I enjoy riding my new bike. There's such a feeling of exhilaration in powering up hills and enjoying the rewards of rolling down the other side. I feel greener and virtuous. Fitter and happier. Bursting with fresh air and sunshine. Indeed, now that I think about it, there is, in fact, one moment, during which I felt most alive atop the Silver Sensation. It was during a charity ride along Melbourne's EastLink Freeway. Cars were blocked from entering the usually busy road and thousands of riders took to the tarmac. The ride itself was excellent and I must confess that I did enjoy powering past less fit participants. However, the ultimate "alive" moment occurred towards the event's conclusion, when we cycled into and out of the freeway tunnels (I knew that little computer on the bike would come in handy at some stage!). At this point, the digital display was showing a thrilling 56.5km/h (over 35 miles per hour for my American readers). The feeling was truly breathtaking. The world was whipping past much too quickly. My surrounds were a grey blur of concrete and shouts of elation bounced from wall to wall. It is at such intense speeds that the fragility of life - that delicate balance of risk and reward - flashes into one's mind. Brilliant. Alive.