We ride bicycles for a variety of reasons. And for those of us who own several bikes, many of those reasons are somewhat hedonistic and selfish. We ride because it's fun, relaxing, a rush, good exercise, or whatever.
On days like this, assigning a higher purpose to a bike ride can seem a little silly. But I don't care. Tonight's ride helped me keep it together.
I have a sister, brother-in-law and niece who were near the finish line of the Boston Marathon when the bombs went off. If not for a minor injury that slowed her pace, my sister's time goal would have put her at the finish line at just the wrong time. After a few scary minutes, my family was fortunate enough to confirm that our loved ones were safe.
Others weren't so lucky. I read the news stories all day. I saw the photos. At least one of them will stay with me for a very long time. I wanted to forget it, at least for a few hours.
So tonight, I went into the woods with a close friend, and I rode a bike. I started to feel like I could breathe again. Then I drank some wine before the day's events started to creep back in.
On a night like this, a ride in the woods is priceless.