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Pausing to remember a cyclist

Ghost bike

Ghost bike

This subject is one that everyone hates to hear and write about – the senseless death of cyclist. Struck down in the early morning while out for a ride, Joseph Robinson leaves a void that will never be replaced.

I never knew Joseph, but when you hear of something like this you reflect on what it is to clip into the pedal and push off, taking that initial pedal stroke. The other pedal follows behind. You clip in with the other foot. As a rider this is what you expect. Clip in. Ride. It’s automatic. You don’t think of the bad that could happen. Death or severe injury isn’t the next thought. Sure, that thought might cross your mind on occasion, but I would wager that for most of us those first thoughts are clipping in and the ride.

There’s a comforting appeal to this repetition. The sound of the chain around the cogs moving through the pulleys, the swish of the tires on the tarmac. You see a fellow rider – a quick nod of the head or acknowledging wave. On those quiet morning rides, before traffic takes over, this is our inspiration, our own private moments.

Reading the articles Joseph seemed to enjoy this routine – clipping in, doing the ride. His girlfriend said he never made a major decision without a ride beforehand. How many of us have ridden ourselves clean – able to make that decision, becoming transformed in a space of a couple of hours?

Not all rides are this esoteric – cycling is utilitarian in nature. The bicycle is, at its core, a means of transportation, but we have transformed this vehicle into something that is for many of us a major part of our life.

Joseph’s death is tragic and let us take the time to between pedal strokes to remember his memory – riding in his footsteps, going forward.

One Response to “Pausing to remember a cyclist”

  1. Farzani February 5, 2014 at 11:42 am #

    I know it all too well. I am the Newlywed turned Widow of one taken by a car but I keep pedaling as much as possible as it is my oldest and best friend.

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