Pedaled On

Without fanfare, the cool air crept in during the night, pushing humidity out the back door. Daylight brought crisp air and bicycles to the riding trail.

I find my mind goes to a zen place as I settle into the rhythm of the pedals going round and round. On this day, the phrase “living a dream” echoed through my mind as I ticked the boxes of my life that makes this true.

  • I was pedaling on a trail, while many were back in school.
  • I can take vacations in off seasons.
  • I have wonderful friends.
  • I have a very comfortable home that I love.
  • My husband . . . enough said đŸ™‚

The list could continue, but you get the drift.

A voice took me out of my reverie, “On your left!” as a man sped by me. I noticed he was wearing a onesie type of riding clothes. “Hmmm, that’s different,” I thought. Then I checked my mirror to see if my husband was coming up behind me. After noting these bits of information, I then focused back on the trail where I was jolted out of my musings. A shriek escaped my lips as my eyes took in the sight. A huge black snake stretched across the trail, soaking in the sunshine.

My heart leaped into my throat as I narrowly missed running over this snake. I wondered if my shriek was heard by the man who just passed me or my husband behind me. Slowly my heartbeat and breathing returned to normal. Then the regrets set in. I should have turned around to snap a picture of this snake, but I didn’t. I pedaled on.

My shriek had not been heard by my husband, but he was shocked that I had not stopped for a picture. I wish I had stopped, but for some reason my feet just kept on pedaling. The snake was gone by the time I returned to the spot on the trail. Maybe next time I will be more observant before I nearly run over the poor critter.

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16 thoughts on “Pedaled On

  1. Your writing made me laugh out loud! I would NOT have gone back for a picture. It also felt like the pace of your writing matched the pace of your peddling. You have such a way of setting the scene. I always feel that I’m in the moment with you – it’s fantastic!

  2. I read this yesterday, and my wifi went down so I couldn’t comment! I have a huge fear of snakes! As far as I’m concerned, pedaling on was the right move.

    Barbara’s comment is spot on! You capture the moment and the subtle meaning in this lovely, seemingly light but perfect slice of wild life>

  3. rosecappelli says:

    Elsie
    Your opening paragraph really pulled me in. Beautiful, lyrical writing. I had not realized that you retired (if I am interpreting that correctly). And thanks for the kind comment you left on my post. For some reason, when I respond to comments it doesn’t go to the commenter. Have a great year!

  4. Yikes, a snake in your path. I would have shrieked right along with you! I totally understand why you didn’t stop for a picture. This post makes me remember your spider slice of life. I couldn’t understand how you could be so close to a spider and not freak out.

  5. I think “pedal on” is more than appropriate for a snake! Ugh! I don’t need to inspect them to know they probably aren’t poisonous, just not my favorite so I can leave them off the picture roll as well!

  6. Your intro, particularly the first paragraph is exquisitely written and so inviting to the piece. You really captured the dream-like state you were in with the rhythm of your writing. I wondered if we might read this as a metaphor for while we are living the dream, unforeseen bad things can happen to remind us that as observant as we think we are, there’s always more to see. In our family, whenever we are doing something that is the opposite of “living the dream,” like being stuck in traffic on the Long Island Expressway,, someone inevitably turns to the others and says, with as much irony as he/she can muster…”Just livin’ the dream!” It has become a family mantra. Oh…and one last thought…maybe the snake is a more powerful image when left to the imagination. Happy cycling!

  7. Joyce says:

    What a nice start to your day…..and mine…..vicariously. I am wondering when we might go onesie shopping for you guys? I’m in!!!!

  8. It is just me, I know, but seeing a snake, any kind of snake, in my path would not have me wanting to stop and take its picture. I readily admit that I am not a fan of snakes.

  9. I run on the trails, too, and have found different critters. This past weekend a doe let me run right past it. I was a little nervous, didn’t know what to expect, it was so close!

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