Friday, January 27, 2012

Fog Lifted (bookend)

I biked home along the river tonight, and though it was briskly cold, the skies were crisp and clear. Each breath I let out left a puff of steam along the path but I was wearing contacts, so did not need to worry about fogged-up glasses obscuring my vision.

I learned how to ride a bike when I was 9 or 10, and then went more than 10 years without riding until I came to Japan. Though the conventional wisdom that one never really forgets how to ride a bike proved true for me, it was also true that I biked like someone who had just learned. Over the past three years, I've gained the sense of balance and coordination that I never developed as a child. So, with the path along the river stretching out before me, empty, I released the handlebars and outstretched both arms as though they were wings. Eyes fixed on the stars in the sky ahead, I flew, free and unencumbered. Free from stress. Free from illness. Free from exhaustion and free from the weight of my every limitation.

For the first time all week, I felt not burdened, but grateful. Simply and wholly grateful. How can I even begin to express my gratitude?

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