A Homely Comparison

My first attempts to ride a wheel were painfully slow and labored. Though assured by friends that the reward would soon come, one declaring, "All at once you will be riding easily, without knowing how you do it," still I struggled, having much fear and clutching the handlebar so tightly that hands were blistered and muscles strained. An instructor pointed out mistakes, directing that the toes, instead of the middle portion of the foot, rest lightly upon the pedals; and that hands clasp the bars gently, needing only to turn it for guidance; also that I look ahead and keep my feet going. I tried to obey, but leaned upon my teacher, begging him not to let go. This continued for three evenings, and on the fourth, my teacher could not come and my husband offered his services.

After several turns up and down the street, he suddenly let go of saddle and handle-bar and I found myself riding alone. It seemed very cruel at the moment for my husband to say, "Now turn around and come back, you don't need my help;" but that night the task was accomplished, and bicycling became an easy method of transit and a charming diversion, instead of a painful and timid struggle as before.

He Calleth Thee
August 16, 1900

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