At Seattle Bicycle Expo last month, I was approached by one of our event volunteers while working my shift in the Cascade booth.
He cut right to the chase. “So, um. Do you ride north on the Burke-Gilman Trail every day at 8:30 a.m.?” he asked.
The answer, of course, was yes. And yes, he rides south on the trail, every day at 8:30 a.m.
We shook hands, compared routes, and promised to wave the next time we see one another.
I haven’t managed to spot him since then (and I’m ashamed to admit that I don’t even remember his name). But I have been working on getting smiles and head-nods out of the other people whom I pass on the trail every day.
I’ve come to think of them as “trail buddies.” There’s a woman on an upright bike who never wears a helmet. There’s a man with a kid-sized seat on his rack (though I haven’t yet spotted the kid who rides in it). There’s a guy I’ve been seeing for three years now, trudging along every morning, no matter what the weather.
To all of you, I would like to say: Thank you riding with me. You give me a sense of community and camaraderie. Especially on those cold, rainy mornings that leave me tempted to ditch my bike and head straight for the heated seat of a four-wheeled vehicle.
Also, I have an orange helmet. You should wave to me.