Rediscovering Bike Riding
I rediscovered bike riding as a mode of transportation about 10 years ago. My car had broken down, which resulted in me walking six miles a day getting back and forth from work. A friend gave me a beat up pink bicycle that he had gotten at a garage sale. All it took to get her ready to ride was a liberal application of chain oil. I remember thinking that I was going to die on that first trip! My muscles were sore and I it was so hard to get up the hill. A short time later I was taking her 5 to 7 miles in a one way. (I know not really that far) By that time I had saved up enough money to replace my car. Pinky was given to one of the neighbor girls.
I got another bike after I moved to Minnesota. I noticed that I had started gaining weight, so I started biking again. At first, it was to the local grocery store, then the 7 miles to Trader Joe’s and eventually a 26 mile round trip to the downtown Minneapolis farmers market.
But wait what about the art?
If I stay in the studio all of the time, my creative muse is depleted. The only way to fill it back up is to get out in the world and do things. I live in South West Florida now and have lovely open spaces to ride.
Here there are several *Rails to Trials, bike paths. My favorite is a combination of two trials, the Venetian Waterway and the Legacy Trail. They combine to a 17-mile trail beginning in Venice and ending near Sarasota. It is while riding on this trial that I see endangered turtles making their way to the cool water for their morning swim, Birds sing to all who will listen about the glorious day. A pair of Eagles has a nest in a pine tree along the route. Occasionally there are Sandhill cranes watching intently as a fisherman baits their hook, and once I had the pleasure to see a group of manatee bobbing along after leaping dolphins.
After a bike ride, I come home physically tired but happy and full of ideas. I have new subject matter or just ideas for backgrounds. My muse has been feed and the urge to paint is back full force.