We've landed back where we started, in our home town of Menifee, staying with family. It's been great to see all of our friends, family and the old places. In Menifee we know the people, the places and the way of life. Just because we don't choose to live here, doesn't mean we don't still cherish this city in our hearts, because we sure do.
One thing I didn't expect is how much fun it has been to ride here. I have jumped on that bike each morning and hit the streets to my business appointments, lunch with friends, and short jaunts for this and that. Because I know each street, each stoplight and stop sign, and know exactly where I'm going, I don't have much to think about. What surprised me was how relaxed I feel, more than any other riding I've done thus far.
This is exactly what I needed. The skills that needed work, I'm now practicing in this suburban solitude, repeating things over and over, smiling all the way. As silly as it sounds, I was having trouble with left turns. A couple of sessions just riding cul-de-sacs, of which there is no shortage in Menifee, has helped me immensely. Today I rolled onto the freeway confidently at the same corner where I panicked just a week ago. Progress.
For our friends in town, it seems amusing to them to see me ride. Being Ms. Menifee Valley of 2011, most of these folks are used to seeing me primped up, complete with short skirts, heels, lipstick, crown and sash. Today I rolled into the parking lot at the Chamber of Commerce and all I got are smiles, shaking heads and the standard farewells of "Ride Safe!" I have to smile because I know my friends are so sweet and so worried. Some of the ladies I know fear they will never see me again.
Coming home before setting off on our Road Pickle trip with our new mascot Asphalt Annie has been good for us both. This portion of our lives seems to have come full circle. We've come home. Now we can leave.
Photo Credit: P.S. Wagstaff, Author of Beneath The Door