Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Girl power

My 13-year-old daughter and I have changed our daily routines this fall. I'm not riding to work, and she's riding most every day, even if it is just a short, one-way trip.

School boundaries changed for this year and she would have had to move to a new middle school unless we got her a zone exemption, which means no bus transportation from our area. Mom leaves early, so I drive Hannah to a nearby neighborhood where she catches the bus each morning. We usually stash her bike in her best friend's garage so she can ride it home in the afternoon.

Now that the streets are icing up, she's talking about wanting studded tires so she won't have to endure walking home while Mom and Dad are still at work.

As we were driving across town one night last week, she told me that kids at school had pronounced her "weird." When I asked why, she explained that they were shocked to hear she was still using a bicycle for transportation weeks after their bikes started collecting dust in garages. I wasn't worried because I could tell the "weird" label had been applied in a fun way, but I asked how it made her feel.

"Kind of strange, I guess," she replied.

"But maybe a little proud, in an odd way?" I asked.

A big grin spread across her face as she said, "Yeah."

That's my girl.


Jeff Moser said...

I love being called a Lunatic when going out for a ride in foul weather! It's a badge of honor!

Drew said...

I get the same thing from adult coworkers. I start getting offers for rides home this time of year, and I get these shocked, "your weird" looks when I decline. Non-cyclists just don't get it.

Dano said...

I remember you writing about your 13 yr old before.
And then I wrote back saying how cool it must be to share the bike experience with her.
I am not as lucky as you with my 13 year old daughter.

Tim said...

I am lucky, Dano, but keep trying with your daughter. You never know when the message will get through.

My son, who is 18, never really warmed up to biking, but the other day he mentioned the idea of running or cycling to get in better shape before he applies to the police academy in a couple of years.

There's still hope we'll pull him into the cult!

Anonymous said...

I tried to get the wife into it by building her a really nice mt bike. While she liked the bike, she never really took to riding it like I hoped she would. The up side is that I have a sweet race day rig to "borrow" that is always clean and tuned up.

I'm building her a nice commuter/touring rig now:)


Grill Meister said...

I'm sure that any of us that commute, or just ride our bikes in winter are labeled just plain "weird". My favorite comment usually comes from new people in the office. When winter rolls around and they stop by the office, and my bike is leaning against wall next to my desk they ask, "Did you ride to work?" DUH!!

Note to Dano - My daughter is 25 now and when she was 13 cycling wasn't important, her friends were. Two years ago she wanted to get back into again and now can't get enough of it. No matter what they do, be a proud Papa, and they will be just fine.

Grill Meister