two saturdays ago

thanks for commenting, daddy. you’re right about me forgetting that things that are boring to me are interesting to you.  i’ll keep going.

***

i went on a bike ride two saturdays ago.  the beach camping trip we planned this weekend didn’t happen because it’s rainy season, and, well, it rained.  last saturday, though, was perfect.

my co-worker came to meet me at the rice soup place at 6 am.  he’d never been, but after he had his first bite he agreed that it was one of the best things he’d eaten in thailand. the fact that the rice soup people are the nicest people ever doesn’t hurt, either.

we weren’t the only people there at that early of an hour. 5 members of the Surat Thani Bike Club sat around one of the wooden tables that have the bottom half frankensteined from classic sewing machine tables.  this morning i watched a little boy eat his rice soup while absentmindedly pumping the footpedal back and forth, up and down, spoon in, spoon out.

the STBC was going to ride to Thungsong that morning.  each of them wore tight, brightly colored, spandex clothing and even kept their bike helmets on while they ate their meal.  when they got on their bikes to ride away, my co-worker leaned over and told me how much he thought their bikes were worth in the US.  “that one, that white one,” he said, “is probably at least $1000, if not more.”  he told me that the helmet and the bike he bought here – at least some parts of it – would probably be much more expensive in the States, though.

you know what makes a huge difference in riding a bike and having it actually be fun? having the tires inflated.  it seems simple now, but it was a small revelation for me.

somehow – maybe when i was sick – i didn’t notice that my tires were slowly getting flatter and flatter, and i honestly believed i was simply weak from being sick, and that’s why it was getting so difficult to ride my bike. i was struggling to ride, and i wasn’t sure why, but i went with it.

there were a bunch of other little things wrong with my bike too (to be honest, it’s not actually my bike, it’s my housemate’s bike, and it’s been out of use for a while), but i wasn’t very mindful about getting the bike initially tuned up, and i certainly didn’t know how much everything would add up.

i feel like there’s a life lesson in there somewhere.  about the small things adding up, about taking care of the things you own, but maybe especially about having a way to help you notice when little things could be improved to make a  big difference.  conversely, i also couldn’t help but think about how doing things the difficult way for a little bit made the “right” way so much more fun, and that i appreciated it more.

***

i’ll think/elaborate more about this, but this will have to be continued tomorrow. 5 am wake-up awaits.

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