Today is Thanksgiving and I ride. It’s a beautiful day. Sun is shining, temps in the 60’s, a light breeze, a perfect time to restore my soul. As most bicyclists know, our activity is a great way to meditate. Today I focus on things I’m thankful fo
r – my family, my job, my friends, interesting things in life, people I don’t see much and wish I did more.
My route starts at home. I don’t care much for driving to ride anymore. A holiday day like this promises little traffic and the city delivers.
I start up the hill through one of the wealthier parts of Nashville – Hampton and Golf Club. I wind through the Richland Creek greenway, skirting the outside edge of Belle Meade. I exit through 51st and Sylvan Park, 51st on mostly deserted roads past TSU and arguably near some of the poorest most dangerous roads in Nashville. But I feel safe.
My route takes me downtown along the river. I pass many homeless people as I usually do. Some are alone, others are with other homeless folks, they’re spending their time with new friends or family – the result of bridges burned with their real blood, maybe a prison sentence wedging space between them, or mental illness creating irreversible problems, addiction or probably a combination.
I think about my time ahead with family this afternoon, the food we’I’ll eat. I wonder,as I pedal along and meditate, if they sit on their park bench on Thanksgiving what they’re thankful for or what they dream of, or maybe they’re more regretful of the things that led them to their predicament.
I’m sitting here, typing this up, most thankful for the luck, skill and support of others that led me to this moment.
I have other thoughts on homeless and ways