The Bicycle, and on Building (and Protecting) Your World
How does the bicycle tie into this?... I cannot yet verbalise it as eloquently as I would like, but I know for certain that it does. Maybe disentangling myself from one aspect of societal expectations and life's inertia made me realise that it was generally possible. Prior to getting a bicycle, I had made some radical changes in my life, and have continued to make others since. Those changes have made me considerably worse off financially, but the quality of my life improved. And most importantly, I feel that I have re-claimed my intellect and creativity, which I now understand was necessary for my sense of personal integrity.
When I ride a bicycle, I experience a heightened awareness of the extent to which we are the architects of our own worlds. Things don't just happen to us, as we like to think when feeling helpless about our situations. Whether we realise it or not, we orchestrate our daily experiences through a complex web of choices and decisions we make - which includes the choice to be passive and let our circumstances, or other people around us, shape our world for us. To live the life we want to live, we must actively build and protect it - not violently or smugly, but committedly and persistently, even if others don't understand us or criticise our choices. For me, this is an important parallel between cycling and life in general.