Jonah’s pulse quickened as he opened the door to “Bikes for Life,” and when he spied the sleek silver frame, his heart leaped. He’d admired touring bikes for years but could never afford one. As he approached, he thought, “Finally, you’ll be mine.”
The salesman walked over and greeted Jonah by name. He’d been in the store eyeing his prize every day for the past year. Each paycheck, Jonah stowed away some of his hard-earned money away. Thanks to this, and his willingness to live on noodles and baked beans, he’d saved enough for his bike tour around the world.
He had already bought the tickets, his clothes, and the rest of the gear he would need for his cycling adventure. Now, it was time for the pièce de résistance, and here it was in all its shining glory.
“Back for another look?” Joey asked.
“Not this time,” Jonah smiled as he pulled a wad of cash from his wallet.
“You finally made it. Good for you,” Joey congratulated.
“Two weeks from now. You won’t see me for dust.”
Jonah couldn’t hide his enormous grin.
He paid for his prize and carried it to his old sedan. As he placed it in the boot, he whispered, “You and I are going to be best friends. We will have such fun. You will bring me nothing but joy.”
Jonah’s prediction came true.
His first port of call was Italy, where he rode through the markets and stopped to buy fresh oranges. He road by the Tiber, when on a blustery day, the water refreshingly sprayed his face. He rode through history when he traveled the beautiful Appian Way.
Next was France, where he rode along the Seine at dawn, the sun reflecting off the frame of his constant companion. He rode through wineries in Provence, where he sampled grapes occasionally, and viewed Monet’s picturesque gardens in Giverny.
Jonah did not feel tired or sore. Thanks to his quiet, comfortable, supportive two-wheeled friend, he felt invigorated and alive.
The duo continued through the narrow streets of Barcelona, the Alpine forests of Scandinavia, and the lushly green hills of Ireland. Rain, hail, or shine, his trusty steed never faltered. Not a puncture, not a brake failure nor a gear slip. It was like they were destined to explore the globe together.
In Australia, they rode across rocky deserts, in Louisiana, through marshy swamps, and in Nepal, over Himalayan mountains covered with snow. No terrain deterred them. They were determined to finish their adventure together.
Their last leg was through the Tanzanian Savannah, where Jonah saw the Big Five, then onto Nairobi, where he shared a meal with Maasai warriors and ended his epic journey at Mt. Kilimanjaro.
On the last night, Jonah sat quietly by the fire, looking at his beautiful bike. He was glad he had ridden. If he had taken a car, a boat, or a train, he would have missed out on so much. Cycling was the only way to travel. The only way you can have a complete sensory connection to your environment.
Jonah put the cover over his best friend and thanked it for transporting him to his dream.