See the woman near the top center of this picture, walking away? She’s key.
* * *
I’d been warned.
“Be careful passing under the bridge where the boat docks.
People cross back and forth there
and aren’t alert to cyclists passing through.”
But I had in mind
to ride the length of the trail
without stopping or getting off,
to go faster or slower,
adjusting as needed,
but to keep riding.
A personal challenge.
“Be careful passing under the bridge…”.
I kept it in mind
I thought of that spot,
how the path dips down.
I’ve walked it plenty of times,
but on a bike
the descent would mean picking up speed.
AND there’s a blind spot
just before the edge of the dip
where you really can’t see what’s down there
until you’re about to descend.
I had a plan, a good plan.
almost to a stop (but not quite)
and look down into the dip
before making my descent.
* * *
I came around a bend,
approaching that spot,
about to work my plan
and, looking up,
saw a woman walking.
We’d be reaching
at the same time,
a bad place to pass her.
Speeding up to pass sooner was not an option.
so I slowed and slowed until
I had to stop
and give her time to walk on.
I’d pass her later in the straightaway that followed the dip.
If not for that woman
my plan would’ve worked perfectly.
If only she hadn’t been in my way.
* * * *
No rush now.
I walked the bike
to the edge
and looked down.
There I saw
not just foot traffic – people boarding the boat,
but an automobile FULLY BLOCKING the path,
someone dropping off a handicapped person.
The thought of what MIGHT have happened was sobering.
If I hadn’t stopped, I certainly would have crashed right into it.
(Ever the blogger, I snapped the pic.)
* * *
I recalled the words
from long ago
of an old woman
whose face and name escape me now
“In the frustrating moments of life,
when I’m stuck in traffic
or a checkout line
or when someone has forgotten something
and we need to turn around and go back,
I try to remember
never to let it get to me,
that we never know just what danger this frustration is saving us from.”
“Give thanks in all circumstances…”
- 1 Thessalonians 5:18
On Monday I expand on recent entries in my Gratitude Journal. This was #929.