Thursday, April 29, 2010


When I was about five years old, my daddy bought me a bicycle.  It was blue, and it was a little too big for me.  No training wheels came with it.  Dad just helped me up there, held onto the bike awhile, running alongside it yelling words of encouragement, let go, and I had my first wheels.  The ability to go anywhere I wanted to go, I WAS FREE!  Until I noticed Dad standing back in the yard.  Immediately the front wheel start to wobble, I forgot to pedal.  Panic set in immediately, and I came down on the newly oiled street head first.  Nobody had thought of helmets yet.

You would have thought being knocked unconscious would have sort of put me off biking, but I needed to be mobile!  I had to be!  So with an ice pack tied to the knot on my head, Daddy and I tried again.  And again.  And again.  It was starting to get dark, and Mom was freaking out about that, but we tried  

This time I got it.  I knew what I was doing.  I was well-trained, and life was never the same for me.  Now instead of having to run alongside the kids with bikes to go to the candy store with my nickel, I kept up with them on wheels.  

One afternoon it was hot as Hades.  There were heat mirages coming off the oil on the street in front of my house.  Nobody was out, most were sitting inside in front of big fans watching cartoons on TV, but I went outside and sat on my bike in the back yard. I just sat on it with the kickstand down and started daydreaming.  First I daydreamed about riding the bike, but when I closed my eyes, I saw the ocean, the waves crashing, the spray reaching to the sky, then as daydreams are wont to do, a pirate ship appeared on the horizon, and I had to prepare to do battle.  My little boat would be no match for that giant ship that had just intercepted me, and I was trembling with fear.  

What happened next was amazing and beautiful!  My little fishing boat began to shimmer and glow!  The masts went up.  My boat was the most brilliant glowing gold vessel anyone would ever see! It cast off a golden light brighter than the sun, and when one of the pirates reached out to pull it in and tie it to their ugly, mean, big ship, electricity shot out to grab his hand and sent him writhing to the deck, screaming in pain, and in the biggest, meanest voice a five-year-old little girl could muster I yelled, "HA HA!  YOU'VE MET YOUR MATCH NOW YOU UGLY DIRTY PIRATE!"  

Another pirate, a meaner pirate, kicked his groaning partner out of his space, gritted his teeth and reached for my golden vessel, only to receive a shock even greater than his buddy had gotten, and he screamed like a little five-year-old girl who was playing all the roles.  And without any hesitation, the pirate ship turned and sailed away, far away from the electric gold boat.  

When Mom called me for lunch, I shook my head and looked up to see the gold masts flapping in the wind, only to see the leaves of a tree in my own back yard, and looked down to find I was sitting on the seat of my 24-inch Schwinn girl's bicycle.  An imagination is an awful thing to waste.  Now, as an adult, I consciously pick a quiet time of my evening to daydream and ride on ships made of gold and swim naked in the ocean.  And sometimes I just sit on the seat of my blue bicycle and listen for my mother's voice.


Magpie said...

Lovely, Kathy, just lovely. Our imaginations are such wonderous things. That's why kids love to play with boxes...we need to use our imaginations. Beautiful memories. :)

Betsy said...

Had to laugh that you had an ice pack tied to the bump on your head and kept going! Aww...sweet story of your determination...and your dad's! :)

Brian Miller said...

what a cool memory...i had a pretty big imagination as a kid as day i will be forced to grow

Mama Zen said...

This is lovely!

Tracy said...

It's a wonder we survived childhood sometimes. How many times did we fall off our bikes and eat "chat"? LOL. They even covered the playground at school with it. Nice story.

Leslie said...

I agree the imagination is too packed full of wealth to waste. What a beautiful Theme Thursday. I am still trying to make rounds which may take me to next Thursday

I'm at if you get a chance