The one about the red bike

When I was 4, I got a red bike for Christmas. I remember it being very tall and getting a bit scared when Dad put me on it because the training wheels wobbled. I was really tall for my age though and a typical tricycle would not fit my long legs. A "big girl" bike with training wheels was a logical thing for Santa to bring. Since it was winter and we were in Wisconsin, the bike was put away to wait for spring.

When spring arrived, I finally got to ride the bike. It was still a bit intimidating, but I finally got the hang of the training wheels and rode it everywhere. The only problem was the training wheels came loose very easily. I was constantly bugging dad to tighten or adjust the trainers.

Dad had decided he finally had enough with the damn training wheels and took them off. He concluded his life would be much easier if he didn't have to keep looking for the wrench and doing repairs. Unfortunately, I was still 4 and did NOT want my training wheels off. After repeated attempts in the driveway, I was just not catching on to balancing and dad was getting really frustrated. He then came up with the idea that if I was going down hill I would have some momentum and it would be easier for me to balance.

He took me and the bike in to the alley behind the house and pointed it down the slope. With the momentum I actually was able to balance. Unfortunately, the alley was not that long. It ended in a T. And while I had learned balance, I had not yet figured out breaking OR turning. The grassy area at the end of the alley might have been a good place to crash, but the property owner had recently had some sharp, pointy, white landscaping rock delivered right where the alley ended in front of the grass. Of course, this is where I crashed.

My shiny read bike was now a mess, my hands were cut up, my knees and elbows were scraped, and I had a bloody nose. Dad ran down the hill and I also saw mom running behind him as i screamed my head off in pain and fear. They got me to the house and cleaned me up. Well, Dad did anyway. Mom was in the bedroom yelling at dad for sending me in to a pile of rocks while we were in the kitchen. Since mom couldn't stand the site of blood, she refused to come out until I was cleaned up. As dad was rinsing all the blood off I remember him saying....

"Don't worry Sal. I bet she'll miss the rock pile tomorrow."
0 Responses