Thursday, February 19, 2009

she's just asking for a fall

Pride is bad. Very bad. Or so I was led to believe by my parents, who constantly quoted 'pride goes before a fall' at me and even went so far as to give me an anti-pride postcard when I was yay high.

It was one of my favourite postcards (I had a few), but not even its great charm was strong enough to sink its message sufficiently deep within my psyche that I forever put self pride to death. I say this because I am about to praise myself. Boast. Glory in my success. Call it what you will, this post is one big orgy of pride.

Not that I'm beating myself up about this because 1) in view of my propensity for self flagellation, 2009 is my year to refrain from all beatings, personal or otherwise and 2) in my adult wisdom I have come to the conclusion a little pride in one's achievements is not such a bad thing. Allowed to grow, of course pride might become a monstrous blight on any person's character, but basking in the glow of a job well done seems to me to mirror God's satisfied observation that his creative efforts were incredibly good.

So here it is: today I cycled 26 kilometres (16.1 miles) around the city. I thought it was 40km (24.9 miles), but google maps reliably informs me it was only 26. First I cycled to the primary school I work in. That involves riding up a dirty great hill which in truth I walked up, and even that nearly killed me.

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All those oohs and aahs from some suitably impressed colleagues did wonders for my self esteem before I sallied forth to my old bible college stomping grounds to present a back care lecture.

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Thankfully the students had all been slogging it out in the garden and were just as hot and sweaty as I was. Although to be honest a large part of the ride was spent gliding down the other side of the dirty great hill.

After offering my favourite back care tips (it's all in the pelvis power I say) I jumped back in the saddle and trecked home. I present two maps here, because there are a couple of dirty great hills between the bible college and my house and google maps offers the shortest route which includes said hills. I myself prefer a flatter journey, so I rode quite some extra distance in order to spare my legs.

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This is all amazing enough, but my greatest source of pride is the way I rode. In the past I've been all timid and cautious and keeping out of cars way, which is pretty sensible when you think about it. Riding through town today however, I had to do some tricky lane changing in order to navigate our crazy one way streets and get to where I wanted. So I put on my aggressive self, which isn't so different from my usual self, and sat out in the middle of the lane preventing any cars from passing. I had to ride like the dickens so they didn't become too irate but I did it! I mastered riding through peak hour traffic and busy streets. (Ah huh. That was totally pride you heard there.)

When I thought about my cycling plans this morning I doubted I could last the distance. I'm really not that fit. So it is wonderfully satisfying to look back on all that riding and realise I can do it and not only did I make it but I found it exhilarating, and I want to do it again. And the icing on the cake? I managed to stay on the bike the whole way up the hill leading up to our house!

Am I good or what? Ha. You don't have to answer that - it's a rhetorical question... I already know.

I suppose the question is, will I fall off my bike now? Because as they say, pride goes before...

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At 9:06 am, February 20, 2009, Blogger Heather said...

You go girl!

At 10:46 am, February 20, 2009, Blogger luke said...

Haha, nice :)

But just so you know, "peak hour traffic" in Launceston is a misnomer ;)

At 4:18 am, February 23, 2009, Blogger Cherie said...

Can you hear it -listen - YES! It's me cheering you on with applause and whistles and 'You Go, Cecily!'

Biking gives me great joy, too.

To be excited at such an accomplishment is a wonderful thing and rightly shared.

(And I don't think you will fall because it's actually 'Pride goes before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall.' Right? So, see, you won't fall.... ;)

At 8:13 am, March 03, 2009, Blogger deanna said...

I am jazzed for you...though I know it's been a while, and I didn't get to commenting right away. But I hope you still feel good about the ride. My children and husband cycle everywhere in this town when they need to. I'll have to let them know about describing "great dirty hills" - simply great expression.

At 8:32 am, March 03, 2009, Blogger deanna said...

So, I just zoomed out on the map in your post and looked again (hadn't in a while) at where Tasmania is. How far away were those horrible fires they showed on the news not long ago? I'm glad you were separated from them by some water, at least. (Sorry to take up all your comment space today, but this is interesting.)


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