As part of tradition during our Hoyt Lakes camping weekend, we jump on the bicycles and roam the streets of Hoyt Lakes for rummage sales. We’re all parents with grown, or soon to be grown, kids. It’s not a “geezer parade” but more than one of us does have some gray hair.
My bike had a flat tire so I found myself riding another bike. It had one of those cushioned, wide, spring loaded seats. It was a bike with old style pedals that I didn’t have to clip in to. And, it only had seven speeds. I mean really……..who’d ride a bike like that? There wasn’t any front suspension. There wasn’t a Shimano XTR derailleur. What if my mountain biking friends caught me riding a bike with Schraeder valve stems? You just can’t jeopardize tire rim strength like that. It had street tires for crying out loud……………..
It was good that we were in Hoyt Lakes where nobody I knew could see me. As one of the youngest of our group passed a young man who was walking along the same street, the walker commented, “That’s something you don’t see every day. A bunch of old people riding bicycles.”
We had some passengers along with us. At least three knee surgeries followed our every turn. A couple of serious illnesses overcome, followed behind. And more than a few “old dogs long gone” ran along with us, happy to be out with their masters on a summer bike ride.
The “old dogs long gone” would lie peacefully around the campfire later that night amongst the “new dogs still here.” Lively conversation about new drink holding gadgets, snacks, and a review of the day’s activities kept us engaged.
Things have changed around the campfire as well. At one time during the evening, as we all sat around the fire, there were at least seven smart phones and three “I Pad book” reading things illuminating their reader’s faces. The battle to prohibit them from the campfire gathering had been lost long ago. Perhaps someday, even the campfire might be digital.
Then my phone beeped to me. One of my apps was telling me that the International Space Station would soon be flying over. At 10:51 PM, it would appear from the NW and disappear into the east. It would be visible to us for four minutes.
It was awesome! It was right on time! We all watched it fly over. Some of us waved. Some followed it on their “Sky Watch” constellation app. Even the book reader things got set aside for a couple of minutes.
Then, the glow of the phones surrendered to the glow of the fire. The “old dogs long gone” went back to wherever they go, and we took our leave of yet another campfire in Hoyt Lakes, MN.
There will be another campfire with the same good friends and “old dogs long gone” in a few weeks. Until then……….peace.
I’m off to the doghouse now….