Posted by: Budger | September 1, 2008

Happy Birthday Dad

On Thursday my dad would have been 71.  He would have been retired now, and probably living someplace where he could regularly volunteer for his local Lion’s club and occasionally go to the racetrack and “play the ponies”.  He would be enjoying the fact that his grandchildren are now grown, and that my brother has made a success of his business.  He would be laughing at my independence streak, and in awe of computers.  He would still call me by my family nickname.  Instead he died at 46 from Heart Disease. 

My dad taught me how to ride a bike.  For Christmas one year, I got from Santa my first bike.  It was beautiful.  It was red, and it had a white basket and a white banana seat.  I couldn’t wait to learn to ride it.  Unfortunately I was afraid, and no matter how much urging or tricking, my dad could not get me to ride that bike without him holding on to the seat.  So on went the training wheels.  I wore those training wheels for months, and my brother and his friends would make fun of me, but finally I relented, and let my dad take the training wheels off.  I will never forget that first ride.  I always loved to ride my bike.  It was one of my favorite things to do as a kid.

This weekend, I thought a lot about my dad while riding.  I thought about all of the things that he missed out on and what I would say to him if he were here.  And when I got tired, and I was losing the argument with the devil, I thought I could hear him saying, “Don’t quit Gertie.”  So I kept riding…Twice.  Following are my stats. 

Total Distance: 36.42 miles

Avg Speed: 10.8 mph

We’re four weeks away from Bike to the Beach.  I’m training as much as I can.  I will not quit.  Happy Birthday Dad!

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