The Bike Hermit gets discouraged. Maybe too easily. He knows he’s not the only one. Sometimes the most basic of tasks are hard to get started. What’s the point after all? Typing on the computer is a struggle. The sentences come out short and clipped. What’s the problem ? It appears, outwardly at least, that everybody else takes care of the events their lives have assigned to them cheerfully and without question…..they just do what they do and they are what they are….. la,la,la,la,la. The Bike Hermit knows that’s not true. Hmmm, the Bike Hermit thinks he’s special. He knows he likes to coddle his feelings of self loathing and regret…why is he not more creative? why does he make everything so difficult? why does he sabotage himself? what value is there to what he does?
Sometimes he is functional and ambulatory on dry land. Sometimes he swims in the soup of his own imaginary swamp. Sometimes he dog paddles and sometimes he just treads water. Other times he sinks below the surface and just floats there. He can observe the world outside which seems unreal and unreachable. The landscape out there is flat and the colors are grayscale or sepia. The weight presses him physically and mentally. It is not entirely unpleasant…..sort of like freezing to death, reportedly.(who reported that and how would they know?)
But when the person who is closest to him and who means more to him than anything else is affected by his whining negativity he realizes he needs to start paddling. Blorp, schpew, cough, hack, spit – his head pops out and he reaches for the bike. He strokes toward the door and outside. Up the literal and metaphorical hill he pedals, trying not to be annoyed by the “rush hour” traffic on this stretch of road that used to be mostly deserted before the geniuses in charge of such things decided it should be paved. Up to the trail he has passed before on this ride but never taken.
Loose sand with horse hoof craters and horse shit
Get off and push
Leave bike and walk.
Except for the cheatgrass he imagines this landscape as unchanged for hundreds, maybe thousands of years. A long time anyway. It looks benign but it is really quite harsh. The hills are steep and the soil is poor; sand and windblown silt. No trees grow here, just sagebrush. He sees one half of a jawbone of some small animal and kicks it over.
Back to the bike
Walk down to the road
Coast back down
Now there is some light and color penetrating the gloom, a lens of sunset sky suspended over the horizon. Getting cooler and almost dark.
In the morning, puke it out onto the virtual page. That actually feels better. A lot better.