Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Super Heroes on our Alien Planet
2010 Fall Foliage Ride

I want to start this post with a disclaimer. The next photo you will see is not for the faint of heart; especially when you consider riding without the benefit of electric vest or gloves.

Scary! I know! Yet year after year, Andy and I mount the bikes and head off fifty miles to the start point for the New England Riders Fall Foliage ride. It’s not for the faint of heart. I have to admit that I seriously considered staying under the warm covers. Had I done so, I would have missed some very valuable lessons about life.

EasyEd put together this ride and promoted it suitable for couples; enough “flower sniffing” for the ladies, mixed with just enough fun twists for the gents. On this day EasyEd and his lovely wife BikerTrix are our hosts of the day. Don’t you just love those handles? They sound like a couple straight from the Incredibles.

Their hero sounding names prove to be an accurate assessment when out of her super saddle bag BikerTrix pulls some hand warmers and selflessly offers them to me when she sees me wringing my cold hands.

EasyEd’s power to organize a group ride is just a small part of the powers this Incredible duo are capable of, and only the beginning of how I will remember this day.

It’s interesting how we each perceive our environment. While I admire those that fear not the cold, they show themselves in other ways by the remarks that are overheard. Some see the bare branches of the trees that have lost their color, while others express joy at the colors still clinging there.

We are all looking at the same world but I realize that my perception is not someone else’s; their perception is just as valid from their eyes as from mine. Interesting. Same world, different definitions for what we see.

Autumn often brings with it thoughts of harvest and preparations for the long dark winter to come. Yet in the midst of this “end of life” theme there are splashed of vibrant life that thrives with the cooler temperatures.

I begin to feel as if I’m visiting an alien planet, where contradictions abound. Life rejoices in the face of immanent death that autumn heralds, and I try to see the world as others are seeing it. Through this kaleidoscope of images our super heroes lead us. Along paths of wonder we are adventures in a new and beautiful land.

In the end, I remember a favorite recurring theme that runs through the history of the New England Riders. “It’s all about the pie.” It’s then that I understand; while the pie is sometimes literally meant, it’s the perfect metaphor in how we remember the day.

It really is all about the pie.

(Photos by Bob Fesmire)


SonjaM said...

While in Alberta a learned to appreciate heated grips when riding in the low 20 or 30F, but I never got a heated vest. If it is getting too cold it is not safe riding anyway...
Lovely fall colours, but even more I like the pie! After all, it is about the pie, right?

Unknown said...

Once again, you've taken me along on an adventure and provided a different perspective. I wish we could have joined the group on Sunday but Sharon didn't know if she'd be able to do 300 miles at those temps and I had to be back for work by 4:30. It's always a pleasure reading your blog. Just so you know, I check it every day and it's always a treat when I see something new. So on those days when you might not feel like writing, remember, I'll be disappointed. :)
My best to Andy,