Riding a New Path
On March 16, I started working from home. For a little while, it was fine. Maybe even kind of fun. After all, I just got back an hour of my day in commuting time alone. But then the days turned into weeks and the isolation started to have a real impact. No visits with friends or family. No happy hour. The gym was closed, so no exercise (I tried online classes, but my brain/body wasn’t having it). I was feeling very stressed and finding it difficult to concentrate. On April 17, I asked my wife to take me to the nearest bike store. Prior to that date, the last time I had ridden a bike was probably 20 years ago. The first ride was simple, probably less than a mile total. But the instant I hit a decent speed on a straightaway…I was flooded with memories from when I was a kid. Riding down the big hill near my house (shoutout to Fairway Avenue!) with friends. Wind in your hair, the exhilaration of self-generated speed. Then, the cost. Every hill you go down…you have to pedal back up. But as soon as we got back to the top, we wanted to go right back down!
I found myself back on the new bike the next day. And then almost every day after that. My mood improved. I found myself being very productive. I started reaching out more to friends, family, and coworkers (I am now a Zoom wizard). I’ve biked almost 1,100 miles in the last six months. In addition to the health benefits, I’ve found myself feeling more connected with my city at a time that it’s easy to feel disconnected. I’ve seen a lot of fun things on my rides: dolphins, stingrays, art and murals I never noticed, etc. Things I was too busy to notice before. I could make a pretty lengthy, detailed list of things we’ve lost during this pandemic. Things that mean a lot to me. But I’d rather focus on the things I found, or in some cases remembered. I hope you’ve all found some new things too.
Director of Customer Support, PAR, Inc.
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