Spring has arrived in Denver. Yesterday we saw 75 degree weather, and with church not starting until 1pm, thought it would be a great day for a bike ride. We embarked on an expected 30 minute ride – and 2 hours later had ridden through the bulk of Denver. We saw the ritzy homes of Country Club & Cherry Creek, enjoyed Capitol Hill & Cheeseman Park, the Denver Zoo in City Park, the ghettos of 5 points & Whittier, and the heart of downtown.
Just past downtown we stopped at Confluence Park to join the “beach goers” laying out & throwing sticks in the river for their dogs to retrieve. I’m pretty sure if I had thrown a stick in the river Dave would have happily jumped in & retrieved it for me (he was looking upon the dogs with serious envy). Anyway, we checked the clock – and upon realizing it was 12:20pm, knew we had to head home. We were still a good 25 minute ride from our house, church started at 1pm, and Dave’s sister & family were coming to our house at 12:45pm so Dave could give them a ride to the airport.
Not 30 seconds into our ride home the chain on Dave’s bike broke. You would think we would be prepared for this as 40% of the rides we go on result in something similar. Since we have been married, Mr. “bunny hop” has “broken” in one way or another 2 rented bikes, 3 borrowed bikes, and of course his new bike a few times. And while we were only 2 minutes from REI, we had no $. So with the clock ticking Dave decided to take my bike & race home – hoping he could get our car, come pick me up, and made it back to our house in time to take his sister to the airport.
I reminded him there was NO ROOM for error as everyone we knew who lived close would very shortly be in church. He assured me he could beat the clock.
So I started walking his bike home. Being inconspicuous proved difficult as there were hundreds of people riding past me on the bike path – and turns out it is hard to lay low when you are wearing a bike helmet, bike gloves, bike shorts, bike clip shoes, and WALKING your bike. After 25 humiliating minutes of saying things like “No, I’m not hurt,” “No, I’m not lost,” “No, my tire isn’t flat” Dave called. The relief I felt immediately disappeared as he asked if I had used the bottom lock on the front door which the hide a key has no power over. Of course I had, and I had the keys to the back door with me. So, he couldn’t access our cars or our house.
Of course at this point church was just starting and the bike and I were starring down the barrel of a 1.5+ hour walk home. So Dave text messaged Chris at church, and Chris found a friend who was willing to be my knight in shinning armor. I felt more than sheepish having our friend in his Sunday best leave church – to find me in my scandalous/skin tight biking outfit, smelling & looking like I had been on a 2 hour ride, and polishing off my water bottle as it dawned on me it was fast Sunday.
Is this some sort of heavenly retribution for the $2.01 trick I pulled last week? The ironic thing is this week I had asked my seminary kids if it was more important to be on time to church, or to stop and help a friend changing a flat tire.