Last Sunday I got up early and biked through the “secret” passage to neighboring Filothei…and it was glorious. Hardly a car in sight, and the maze of hilly streets proved both interesting and challenging. Best of all, I came across a lovely little playground that had a structure perfect for a two-year-old.
Until now I never would have considered taking Violet in the baby bike seat that has been gathering dust in our basement. But I had to remind myself that when I bought this seat, way back when Liam was 18 months old, I used to cross six lanes of traffic on Georgia Avenue, then share the road on some back streets to get to the trail head in Silver Spring. And there was that time I got REALLY ambitious and took him on the Metro for a bike ride on The Mall. Compared to that, this was gonna be cake.
First, Violet would need a bike helmet. She’s been begging for a pink Peppa Pig one, but Hello Kitty was the best I could do. She didn’t mind one bit.
Next, I had to get used to the balance. It’s been a little while since I had a kiddo on the back of my bike…though maybe not as long as you’d think. I was still seating Liam back there to ride the trails in Wichita when he was almost six. One of the advantages to having such small children is they almost never exceed the weight limit no matter their age. Even though it’s been a few years, my body remembered…just like riding a bike, as they say!
And then we were off! There was considerably more traffic at 11:30 AM on a Friday, but nothing I couldn’t handle. There were just a couple of dicey spots where I had to share the road, but drivers always slowed way down, and most of the time I could find a little nook to duck into while they went around. I actually felt a bit better riding against traffic on the one-way roads. I know that’s a big no-no, but it gave me more time to find a nook if I could see the cars coming toward me. And once I got into Filothei, the streets got wider and less busy.
I wish I had a video of Violet’s reaction. She LOOOOOVED it. She had her own little bell to ring, which she did…often. And I had a near constant commentary about the trees and the cars and the people we passed. “I like the bike very much, mom,” she said after a long, “Wheeee!” down the hill.
We met another mom and her son at the park, and they told us there are several other lovely parks in Filothei that we could probably bike to. I’m so tickled we’re finally getting back on the bike. Some of my fondest memories of Liam at this age were our little bike outings and picnics in DC and Orlando. I’m looking forward to many fun fall outings with Violet this year.