it seemed like a nice enough day for a bike ride to try out the new coon prairie trail that was recently finished between viroqua and westby. a bit breezy perhaps, but worth the 8 mile bicycle ride from our house to downtown since we could make a stop for ice cream at ole & lena’s kaffe hus. and, hey, we’ve done a 20 mile bike ride so we knew we could make it.
the ride out was, in hindsight, suspiciously easy because we somehow didn’t notice that we had a 20mph wind to our backs. i guess we should have known something was up when we made it the 8 miles to westby without seemingly having to pedal once.
it was so easy that odin decided he wanted to pick up 4 more miles to make it an even 12 before enjoying ice cream and heading back home. but by the time we made it back to ole and lena’s the winds were gusting up to 40 mph! and we were still 8 miles from home!
we were both still in denial about how hard the rest of the trip was going to be as we relished our ice cream cones and commented on how the crazy wind made for tough going.
i guess we both thought maybe the wind would calm down. we had no idea how wrong we would be.
the next 8 miles were brutal. the wind picked up more, sustaining more than 20 mph and gusting over 40mph. the winds were so strong that you had to pedal doing downhill just to keep moving!
for the first time in his life i saw odin really struggle with the idea he might not be able to accomplish something he set out to do. of course, i told him there was no shame in calling mama and waiting by the road for her to come pick us up.
“poppi, i really want to finish this. but i don’t know if i can. i don’t think i can. i really don’t think i can.”
i told him we’d take it one hill at a time and to listen to his body. just one pedal push after another and another and another. if at some point he didn’t have another pedal push, well that was just fine. we could always try again some other day.
it was amazing to watch him draw upon every ounce of determination he had and make it all the way home.
well, all the way except for the last few blocks when his front tire went flat 🙂
he was pretty tuckered out when we got home but, of course, five minutes later he was asking when we could go outside and play some street hockey.