Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Riding Bikes

My driveway was longish, about a tenth of a mile. When I was in the third grade (I think) we had it paved. We called it black top. I remember feeling like we were rich, because now our entire driveway was like a street.

This made for some excellent bike riding!

Marvin's driveway was gravel. More accurately, it should have been called rock. It consisted of huge rocks. Even when ours was gravel, it was gravelly gravel. I'm not sure why his driveway – excuse me, lane (as he liked to call it) – was base layer sized rocks. The few times that I rode down the lane in a car felt rough. And it also felt so weird to be moving parallel to my own driveway and see the view from Marvin's side. I liked it – it was as if I stepped into his head for a moment to see something he saw. The lane was white and the approaching house was very dark in the woods.

Back to my driveway. One of the activities that filled our days was riding our bikes. We went up and down the driveway, and through the yard sometimes, but mostly up and down the driveway. Marvin raced BMX and had one of those bikes first. I had a pink Huffy that used to be my older cousins'.

June 1983.
That's a Pinto in the corner. And the green electrical boxin the
background is where the path through the field connecting our houses began.

We liked to make skid marks with our tires. It was so easy – remember coaster breaks? I would go over the handlebars if I got on a bike with coaster breaks now.

A select few other things that happened thanks to the bikes:
Pretending we were cars. The driveway sealer line a few feet up from the big turnaround area by the house was where "town" began. The tree by the driveway a little further up was a McDonald's drive-thru.
Pulling each other on skateboards and/or roller skates. Get a jump rope, tie it to the back of the Huffy (see convenient silver bar off back of seat in above photo), hang on. I remember a crash landing in the yard between the house and garage. Roller skates stop in grass.
Wheelies! Marvin could always do this better. And when he got a...uh...trick bike? then the wheelies and indo's and other fun things were way beyond what I could do on the Huffy. After the BMX bike shown above, he he stepped it up to a lime green bike that had mag wheels and pegs on the front and back.

Riding our bikes was a staple to our days together. It was the good old standby when we were out of other options or just wanted to move. So simple.

1 comment:

  1. Ah yes, Marvin. The greatest young man I have ever known. He played until he stopped and when he stopped, he was asleep. He was carried home many of nights. He on the floor, butt in the air.

    Yes, I have pictures for you.