Learning to Ride

on finding freedom in something tangible
30/06/2016. total words: 242

10km per hour.
Wobbling, first gear, clutch half-in.
Slow loops around a parking lot.

20km per hour.
Steady, second gear, foot on the brake.
Emergency stops and slow corners.

30km per hour.
Steady, second gear, one eye on the mirrors.
On the street for the first time.

40km per hour.
Steady, third gear, hand clenched on the throttle.
A slightly larger street, some traffic.

50km per hour.
Panicky, fourth gear, no hand on the clutch.
"Get up here, don't fall back." I swear I'm flying.

60km per hour.
Relaxed, fourth gear, watching traffic.
Lane changes still need work.

70km per hour.
Mischievous, fourth gear, lane changes are better.
I'm not supposed to go above 60 until I take the skills test.

80km per hour.
Steady, fifth gear, passed the test.
On the highway, the wind in my face to no end.

90km per hour.
Tensed, fifth gear, visor still up.
Fighting just to stay on the bike.

100km per hour.
Strained, fifth gear, head down into the wind.
This isn't flying, this is a battle.

110km per hour.
Relaxed, fifth gear, on the way home.
To think I was flying at 50km per hour.

75km per hour.
Easy-going, fourth gear, cruising along.
Corners still need work, but that's for another day.

(185km per hour.)
(Cackling, laughing, four years late, racing the BMW and I don't notice the pain in my leg.)
(I just wanted to remember what it felt like to fly.)