Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Anniversary Bike Ride

The humidity hung heavy over the pond this morning.

The Brixton Prairie was heavy with buds ready to burst.

Not an ideal morning for a bike ride, but hey! it was our anniversary!

Now Tom is not a biker.

He plays basketball and golf.

I, on the other hand, bike...

...and I bike.

But today Tom showed his love by strapping on the helmet and joining me for a short bike ride down the Monon Trail.

The trail wasn't crowded... a few dog walkers and strollers.

The woods however were full of berries and birds.

Tom was amazed to be biking down the heart of the city - tree lined and so peaceful.

He was impressed with how friendly the people were along the trail.

We biked all the way down to 54th Street - my farmers market.

He waited in the shade while I biked an extra mile to my donut shop.

Tom can't eat donuts or breads, so it would be cruel to subject him to those wonderful smells.

But as we headed back north, Tom needed lunch.

We passed all the cute cafes of Broad Ripple and stopped at Tom's favorite place - Whole Foods.

Browsing the gluten free section, he came out with a whole grocery bag of food.

Tom doesn't even shop like a biker.

We enjoyed our picnic lunch as we eyed the blueberry bushes for sale out front.

Many years ago I planted a blueberry bush back in New Castle.

I think we only got a few good berries out of it.

I picked those berries with the kids and took them with us to visit Nelly.

Nelly had taken care of the house for my Mom and Dad for 20 years or more.

We loved Nelly.

She was like a member of the family.

But now she lay - old and sick - on her hospital bed - her mouth dry as she gave a weak smile to the kids.

She enjoyed the visit - but the highlight was when we gave her our precious few blueberries.

You could just feel the burst of sunshine-bright flavor burst into her mouth with those ripe berries.

She gave the most beatific smile.

"That was wonderful!"

Nelly died the next day.

I like to think those blueberries were one of her last memories of earth.

I always think of Nelly now when I see blueberry bushes.

Lunch over - Tom lugged his heavy grocery bag back to the car by bike.

Strapping his bike to the car, he headed off home by car, leaving me to bike the rest of the way home.

Hot, muggy - not a lovely time to ride.

And then - whoosh - down came a deluge of a storm.

I darted under a tree to wait out the pouring rain and protect my Droid.

Huddled under the tree, I watched the rain wash all that heavy humidity from the air.

As suddenly as it began, the rain stopped...

...and the sky opened up fresh clear and blue - like the taste of fresh blueberries to a hospital patient.

Happily I jumped back on Ripley for the last few miles home...

...pulled into home and found a surprise - an anniversary gift from Tom...

Blueberry bushes for Brixton.

Thank you, Tom.

I love you.
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