It’s warm in the morning now. It’s nice to wake up, throw on some shorts, open the door to the patio and not be cold. Some days tandems are booked in by 6:30 a.m., so it matters to me. But on the lucky days we don’t start until 9 a.m. Sometimes a sleep in is nice, but I feel a wee bit of guilt when I do. People are up and about early here. In fact, I’m quite sure there’s a rooster in my neighbourhood, though that probably has nothing to do with people’s daily routines. But I have heard it crow. I swear. Though it doesn’t really matter. The other birds are loud in the morning – their songs unfamiliar to my ears, and some quite unique, shrill and repetitive. The distraction is beautiful compared to the noises in most cities.
The bike ride to the airport is about 15 mins long, five of which is spent on the main drag in town. People are getting coffee from a lone brown coffee cart by one of two local bakeries or running into the grocery store for whatever odd thing they need at 8 a.m. I’m weary as I cruise down the street, often looking over my shoulder. I still don’t trust the cars here. It seems pedestrians, which includes cyclists, are second-rate citizens. Often I break the rules of the road just to protect myself. But seeing as I cycle everywhere, it’s just easier to look after myself. Besides, don’t they know they’re on the wrong side of the road?
The trees are plentiful and lush here, overtaking people’s front gardens and the edges of the numerous hidden bike paths all over town. Some days it’s as though I am peddling through a rain forest, which I suppose I am for the most part. New Zealand has many temperate rain forests, though this region merely skirts the edge of one.They sprout flowers I have never seen, fruit and seeds that appear from a child’s imagination, and lush colours that seem absent in the deep of Canadian forests.
Apart from the hour or so a day I spend on my bike, I enjoy every minute of the journey. I catch myself smiling as I whisk down the streets, but it’s only because I’m marvelling at what
has become my life. A phoenix rises out of the ashes right? Not that I’m a phoenix, but … well, that’s the best I can do right now. It is late and I am exhausted from spending all of Christmas day (it’s Boxing Day today) on my friend’s lawn consuming copious amounts of bubbles (champagne) in the sunshine, and then going to bed late. Oh, and having to be at work for a 7:30 a.m. start this morning. Sleep just seems wonderful right about now. And tomorrow is a wonderful 9 a.m. start – so I get a little sleep in – hopefully without much guilt. Merry Christmas, everyone.