To ride or not to ride – Part 1
When somebody suggests we meet, two things now happen.
My immediate thought is “I hope I can ride there”. Sometimes they’ll suggest a location. I’m then relieved if it’s somewhere within an easy riding distance (which to me is about a ten kilometre radius from home). Alternatively, I might be a little apprehensive because it’s not.
Coalescing with this might be an opportunity to recommend an alternative place to meet. This is where self-interest has a conversation with the greater good. In my head, a volley of questions fire: “can I suggest somewhere close to home?” “Do I suggest somewhere halfway?” “What’s fair given the circumstances?”
Selecting a place to meet has often been a conundrum for me. Every place is so different in how it feels. Every person is so different in what they like or need. I’ve always thought carefully about which location is going to suit that person and the purpose for which we’re meeting. I also consider what I might enjoy on that day as well. Even after I arrive at a cafe, I’ve been known to change tables three or four times. I’m grateful to share this peculiar need with other friends who, like me, would prefer to be looked upon strangely for changing tables rather than sitting somewhere that’s not comfortable or suitable for that day.
Last Sunday was extremely hot and humid. The weather had been gathering its heat all week. Towns were reaching peak temperatures. To add to the current heat wave, news reports announced that globally 2014 was the hottest year in recorded data.
Eleven days earlier, I’d received an email from friends suggesting we meet. They would be on the Gold Coast for two days. We hadn’t seen each other for twelve months. We always enjoy catching up and sharing stories from our lives. They would be staying at Main Beach.
Enter apprehensive thoughts! Main Beach is the other end of the Gold Coast. It’s not close to my home and way outside my arbitrary ten-kilometre comfort radius.
We agreed to meet late Sunday afternoon at their apartment at Main Beach. I figured that if they’ve travelled 36 hours on a plane from New York, then my riding twenty kilometres up the road to Main Beach is only fair.
Though, as Sunday approached, my apprehension grew. Each day, the heat and humidity was intensifying. Thunderstorms were brewing. They were forecast for Sunday.
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