It may be a bit early on in this blog to have a taken a day off, but I am on the island to write a new play, and when you’re on a roll, you roll with it. Yesterday, I was on fire playwriting. No blog. Today, I was on a roll in another way I suppose.
They say that, “good things come to those who wait”, and from a philosophical point of view, I think that’s true. But to call a spade a spade, anxiety also grows in those who are waiting. Two years ago, I broke my patella in half. That experience turned my life over in virtually every way, and for the most part, I can wholeheartedly say that I think that’s a good thing. The only negative consequence that I care to share is that I now experience anxiety and apprehension about somewhat insignificant things.
When I arrived on the island, I expected to find a bike a waiting for me. I had psyched myself up and was ready to get biking. I’ve been riding a stationary bike as part of my therapy for some time now and find that just two days away from it will find me stiff and achy at best. So, the plan was to arrive at my cottage, drop my things and traffic be damned, bike in to town to pick up some groceries. (Clearly in my mind I was riding a lovely old sea foam green bike complete with wide handlebars and a basket safely secured to them like you see in the movies). But, when I arrived at the cottage, no bike. Being the compensating queen that I am, I quickly set an exercise routine for myself that while painful and laborious, would help me maintain mobility and continue to build the wee bit of muscle mass that I have. None-the-less, my kingdom for a bike!
I have been meeting new people all over the island and through the kindness of strangers I was lent a bike that was delivered to my home! How lucky am I?! Well, that wonderful bike was delivered to me last Sunday and it took me until today to ride it! I see you fear, and I raise you!
Earlier this week I had walked an arguably long distance to the copy store to print out some things and to be completely transparent, to check out the bike route. Well, to this day, I have seen bike route signs, but I have yet to affectively find said bike route. I know that I tend to be more successful when spoon-fed, but this ridiculous!
After waking early, doing my entire exercise routine, eating a full breakfast and fully procrastinating by shaving my legs, I covered my sexy bitch (that’s what I call the scar on my knee) in it’s little compressing sleeve and focused. Terrified, I talked myself into putting on sneakers. (This was the first time I had done this since I had arrived). Gathering my things in my backpack (no quaint basket to be found here in reality), I picked up the key to the bike lock (which I had practiced unlocking the night before – really) and headed out to my generously loaned bike. I haven’t rode a proper bike since I was teenager, so the fact that I then mounted the bike and rode it a bit without tipping over felt like success in itself. Cautiously, I tested the brakes on the sandy road and then took off! I successfully overshot my intended location twice, but eventually I arrived and did what I needed to do. This included mentally applauding for myself. (You should feel free to do the same).
Returning home, I was determined to find and use the bike path. Instead I accidentally biked halfway across the island overshooting my intended location yet again, by well, town! It was a beautiful ride through the hills and I am very grateful to all of the drivers who could tell I was lost and let me cross politely or awkwardly pull over at the sound of a truck or a bus. I am from NYC where not enough consideration is given to bikers, so there’s that factor too. Starting to ride again here in Nantucket somewhat naively feels like I’m riding with training wheels.
There are many upsides to this riding experience, not the least of which is, I did it! The irony of the whole thing is that I am writing this blog entry in a coffee bar called Handlebars that caters to cyclists. I’m here a lot. One would think I could have asked these guys for directions or help, but fear is a strange thing. Tomorrow, I plan to ride out to the beach and go swimming. And while that bike path may or may not remain illusive, I am determined to get stronger in every way and for me, getting back in the routine to rebuild muscle is like, well, like riding a bike. (Yep. I went there).