Last weekend, I had the distinct pleasure of doing some neighborhood riding with eight kids, ages 4 – 12. We only had five Trikkes between us, but we also had a Razor PowerWing (a distant cousin to the Trikke), a few scooters, and a handful of bikes too, so everyone got to participate in the fun.
These kids have been riding Trikkes for several months, so you’d think the newness might have worn off by now, but no! I thought it interesting and wonderful that no matter how many runs up and down the street we took, unused bikes and scooters lined the driveway, but every single Trikke was always in use. If that isn’t a testament to the amazing, addicting machine that is Trikke, I certainly don’t know what is.
“I couldn’t help but smile at the beauty and simplicity of the whole thing…”
I am continually astounded by the speed at which kids pick up on how to ride a Trikke. While I was there, the oldest kid significantly, accidentally improved his uphill technique and shared his newfound knowledge with the younglings. Within 90 seconds – literally – the four kids who’d witnessed the breakthrough and heard his description of the new technique had absorbed the information, applied it, and were climbing hills like they had been doing it for years. I stood there, mouth agape, thinking, “What the…? It took me weeks of actively trying to figure out that very thing, another couple of weeks to “forget” the old technique and create new muscle memory, and at least one more week for it to become habit. And they did it all in less than two minutes! Daaaang. I am either thinking way too much or getting seriously old. Or both…”
Feelings of decrepitude and ancientness aside, I couldn’t help but smile at the beauty and simplicity of the whole thing: kids outside on a sunny, warm December day (gotta love living in the South); being active and having a blast doing it; learning and growing – physically and mentally – without knowing, caring, or worrying about the change; enjoying the company of other friends of varying ages and not caring who rode better, worse, differently or whose vehicle was newer and shinier; the laughter, the smiles and the multitude of “Watch me!” calls echoing up and down the street; the way they all encouraged each other; the way every single kid turned around and raced to the aid of the boy who purposefully took a tumble into the grass so that the four-year-old (who didn’t quiiiite have full control of her brand new PowerWing) wouldn’t crash and burn on the cement; the way the older ones took turns walking beside the youngest ones and pushing them up the hills when they couldn’t do it themselves; the way they graciously took turns when someone else wanted to ride one of the Trikkes. It was a beautiful thing.
Not once have I wished I could return to my childhood, but watching these kids being kids and riding Trikkes as if it was the most natural thing they’d ever done, I wished for a split second that I could climb into a time machine and go back about 35 years and join them for a couple of hours.
The more I think about it, that’s really not necessary, though, because each time I mount my Trikke, all of my cares vanish, I forget about my aches and pains, I smile uncontrollably, and I feel like I’m a superhero flyin’ all over the city. Aw, who needs a silly, old time machine anyway – I’ve got my Trikke!