I have a Trek 10-speed bike of which I am very proud. I’ve had that bike for years and I take very good care of it. It isn’t a mountain bike, but a “skinny tire” road bike.

Every afternoon at 5 p.m. I change clothes, put the bike on the bike rack, and head straight for the Berry College campus. Weather permitting, I complete a 15-mile workout ride. I park my car at the Cage Center and ride across campus to the Viking Trail, take the trail to the mountain campus and back. My ride culminates with a ride by Barnwell Chapel to the Ford Buildings and back to my car.

An Avid CyclistWhen I was 8 years old, Santa brought me a brand new bike for Christmas. I started riding that bike around the neighborhood and I’ve been an avid cyclist ever since. I relished riding my bicycle so much that when I was a teenager, Mama surprised me with a brand new 5-speed bike. It wasn’t my birthday, it wasn’t Christmas, Mama simply surprised me with it and I certainly was thrilled. I rode that bike all over town. In those days Rome had no bike trails. My friends and I rode from Atteiram Heights and North Hills to Chatillon Road to the mountain campus at Berry College and back. Can you believe that?

One Adam-12Remember the television show Adam-12? One of my friends from high school, we’ll call him Chad, memorized all those radio calls. If memory serves, he had a late model Satellite Sebring. He and his buddy Seth were always riding around on patrol, playing cops and robbers. It was hilarious. More about that later.

One summer day I was riding my bike down East First Street. I turned left on Glenn Milner Boulevard. The light at the intersection of East First Street and Glenn Milner was yellow. As I headed through the intersection, I looked to my right and one car was coming. The lady driving that car did not see me. I planned to just ride around her, behind her car, and stop. However, she stopped and I couldn’t avoid her. I slid into her car like sliding into base at a baseball game. I was not hurt but she was horrified! I assured her I was uninjured and tried to calm her down. Just then Chad and Seth drove by on patrol, playing cops and robbers. They both said, “Hey, that’s Pam Terrell! We gotta stop!” They put my bike in the trunk of Chad’s car. I assured them I was okay and they gave me a ride home, for which I was especially thankful.

Chad said, “Pam, don’t get run over by anymore cars. Next time Adam-12 might not be there to save you!”

You Can’t Spell Enjoy without JoyCycling is great exercise. My bike rides at Berry are nothing short of delightful. The red-tailed hawk circles overhead as if to say, “Look at me! I’m wild and free!” Wild turkeys are in the meadow by the Rollins Research Center. In June the dragonflies and butterflies will be back. They flit around my handlebars as I ride and it’s fun watching them. The wildlife and the physical exertion of the bike rides renews me spiritually, emotionally and physically.

As I’ve mentioned, my word theme for 2019 is “joy.” You cannot spell enjoy without joy. Think about that for a minute. We all discover joy in things we enjoy doing. Cycling is one of the many things in which I find joy. As I stated, I’ve been riding a bicycle since I was 8 years old. I am now 62 years old and happily still riding my bike. What a blessing!

Native Roman Pam Walker is a paralegal, a writer, an event planner, a history enthusiast and reader of Southern fiction. Readers may email to her at pamterrellwalker@gmail.com.