Monday, August 2, 2010

Suburbs of Our Discontent

O, how shall summer's honey breath hold out
Against the wreckful siege of battering days,
When rocks impregnable are not so stout,
Nor gates of steel so strong, but Time decays?
O fearful meditation!
--from Sonnet 65

Ah, Mortality.

Fresh from yet another birthday (Friday), I took a plunge . . .
I mean, a literal plunge. Like off a bridge.

This particular bridge was on The Battle Road Trail in The Minute Man National Park in Concord, MA. It looks like this:

My daughter and I were having a fine time, until we came to this bridge, which was marked with a sign: Walk Your Bike.

“Mommy, it says ‘walk your bike.’”

“Oh, that’s just if the bridge is crowded with walkers. We’re good!”

One moment I’m slowly going around the bridge’s sharp turns; the next, I’m tipping—slowly, excruciatingly slowly—off the bridge, unable to get my foot out of that stupid foot harness.

And then, after that, I hit the ground, five feet below my daughter who is screaming.

Ten minutes later we were back on the path, thanks to some friendly college students. Five hours later, sore as all hell, I’m stunned and grateful that I did not get seriously injured.

Today, I’m totally freaked out about what could have happened, especially because I’m not twenty (or thirty) anymore.

In addition to providing a poor example of following rules and responsible parenting in general, did I just facilitate the gradual, inevitable degradation of my body? Sad face.

1 comment:

  1. Whoa, scary (for both of you); I'm glad you're okay! A few years ago, we were in England, and I went into my cousin's backyard to yell at the kids to be careful on the trampoline - "no one's allowed to get injured on this trip!" - only to turn around, trip, and smack my head on the doorstep. I spent the next two weeks wearing sunglasses and watching people give Robert dirty looks. Oh, and I also had to give a conference paper: good times!