Thirty-odd brand new bikes provided by our camp’s sponsor.
“So when are you gonna be on Ninja Warrior?”
“What?” I was caught off guard by a mother of some bike campers in between sessions. We were outside of Pittsburgh, in Monroeville, PA, at a quaint sports center, and both of us were killing time until the next wave of kids arrived.
“You know, that TV show with the acrobatic people going through all those obstacles. You look like you should be on that show.” She was kind, and would later be thrilled that her son and daughter were both riding two-wheel bikes.
“Well, uh… thanks! Maybe I ought to apply!” I’d always imagined being so nimble. Continue reading
Our first day in Toledo for bike camp afforded my partner Kevin and I a little free time. We had heard about a state park called Maumee Bay, and figured a little fresh air would do us some good.
“It’s on the beach!”
Okay, I’d never been to the Midwest, so there were a couple facts that I was about to learn which caught me by surprise. 1) Ohio has a coastline, kinda, because Lake Erie is big enough, I suppose that it’s collision with Ohio might be called a coastline. 2) Ohio shares an international border with Canada, kinda, though the border is some miles out in the aforementioned lake. Continue reading
The Governor’s Mansion, Topeka. Probably haunted.
Topeka spoiled me. I spent weeks of training struggling to learn my role as a bike technician with ICan Shine. Admittedly, between all of the trailer driving practice and power point presentations during training, one hears a lot of horror stories from veterans about camps gone wrong: bad hotels, unmotivated volunteers, tantrum-prone children, equipment thieves. So on my very first camp in Topeka, Kansas, I felt incredibly fortunate.
It’s been a while, so here’s a recap:
I came home from Africa back in November 2012 to be with family over the holidays. Since I was home, I thought I would look for big boy jobs in my field. I had some success during the search, but ended up with a job I never thought existed. I am now a bicycle technician with an organization called ICan Shine, a non-profit group which aims to teach folks who have cognitive and other disabilities how to ride bikes, and to encourage them to become more confident and independent. Continue reading