As I sat on my bike this spring morning, looking at the clear blue sky preparing for my ride, I waited for a mobile machine to past.
The driver looked at me, with some form of recognition, she smiled and waved. I smiled and waved back and began to wonder.
What do they know about this guy?
Who is that guy who rides through the neighborhood everyday, black helmet over his long hair, blue windbreaker waving in the breeze, this old white bearded guy who peddles by without a sound?
Why should they wave at a cyclist? We don't cause no harm to their children or property, we don't make a lot of noise, and we don't take up much space. In fact, we probably represent "green" to them in their petrol machines.
But do they know this guy who passes by in a flash?
They could look at the profile on Facebook for what school he attended or where he worked or even his age, but does that tell much about him?
Do they know he is left handed?
Do they know he will enjoy the company of rabbits in the yard in complete silent for hours?
Do they know he knows where they went to school? Do they know he knows what cars they drive? Do they know when they redecorate or landscape?
Do they know he appreciates inappropriate signs of affection? When couples suddenly pause and kiss each other in public. When couples walk down the street hand-in-hand.
When a glance of an eye brings a smile.
Perhaps he knows more about them than they know of him.
He knows that couples walk the empty village on Sundays with their dogs. Guys will walk baby strollers giving their wives a bit of quiet time in the morning. He watches women on the ground enjoy the dirt. He watches the children riding their first bikes with pink helmets followed closely by attending mothers. He watches couples walking together in the street enjoying the warm weather and the blooming flowers of the neighborhood.
Still they don't know his name, or his reason for riding through their environment, but without a threatening feeling, they will smile and wave at a familiar face and I will respond with the same.
So now I will stop, park my bike, take off my helmet, grab a bottle of water and walk into the yard to enjoy the spring day.
but I leave empty handed.