Allez means go, and I go. Allez is his title but he has no name. We work well together, he and I. Born of trying times, our relationship is as strong as the aluminum forged in it. Flying across stretches of hard-packed cement is what we do. Many bumps, low-hanging trees, twigs, sharp corners, and slippery hills have temporarily torn us apart and quickly introduced me to the scruffy earth. We’ve come close several times to meeting the bumpers of texting drivers, but I can’t say I’m paying much more attention than they are. When he’s there, a wildfire spreads between the ears, behind the teeth, inside the helmet. Things tend to rub together in the everyday world and eventually this leads to electrical discharge. 135th, 123rd, 119th, 103rd: onto a trail these numbers get smaller. I fan the pedals and sweat begins to drip from my sunglasses. You won’t see me cry. This time I spend rarely feels alone.
Oak Park Library is closed through mid-December for construction. Read more »