I moved to Whistler in June of 2000. On my second day here, I went for my first mountain bike ride. I thought of myself as a fairly decent rider; after all, I’d been racing for several years and I had a pretty good grasp of what I was doing… on East Coast trails. Gavin and a few of the shop guys decided to introduce us to the Whistler classic, A River Runs Through It.
Well, damn if I didn’t get totally schooled and had to fight the urge to fling my bike into traffic. The learning curve was steep.
Fast-forward 14 years, and this morning I rode that very same trail with my boys. If you’d asked me on that same ride way back when if I’d be riding this with my kids in the future, I’d have laughed in your face and said “Kids? What kids?” and had another beer.
Riding with my kids is an exercise in patience, coaching, encouragement and sometimes pulling on the reins a little bit. I don’t come close to getting into a rhythm and my own riding is somewhat disastrous because it’s all stop-go, “Mum, watch me!”, “Mum, take a video of this!”, “Whoa, Mum – you made it!” (sometimes I even manage to surprise them).
I love watching them encourage each other, push each other and cheer for each other. Miraculously, they don’t fight when we’re out there and their 2 very distinct personalities shine through.
And through a lot of it my heart is pounding in my chest but I keep my nerves under wraps, for their sake. My hands were still shaking a little bit when I got home.
Pride, it’s a funny thing.