Bike Watching as a Retirement Hobby


I’ve been doing some serious thinking about my future lately. As a lifelong resident of a street adjacent to a lovely park, as I shift from semi-retired to outright retired, I have been wondering what I can do to maintain whatever degree of lucidity I have managed to retain over the years. 

I am a lover of walking, but a nasty Morton’s Neuroma, allegedly caused by many years of early-morning runs on hard sidewalk surfaces, has curtailed that activity.  I do several crossword puzzles daily, not to mention Wordle, Quardle, and, Worldle so my mental capacities are, hopefully, not in doubt. 

… as I shift from semi-retired to outright retired, I have been wondering what I can do to maintain whatever degree of lucidity I have managed to retain over the years

I considered the possibility that I could always take up the study and appreciation of fine whiskeys,  but years of drinking Coors Light have dulled my tastebuds beyond the point of discerning the difference between a peaty and a smoky blend.  Also, the next morning’s headaches made the previous evening’s tasting significantly less fun.

Bring on the scofflaws!

Then, during one of my truncated walks, it dawned on me. Like a bolt of lighting; like a brainstorm from an unknown source; like a bicyclist zooming through a stop sign, it struck me. No, not the cyclist, although that was close, but rather my summer retirement activity. I believe that I should take up the practice of strolling up my street and setting up a camp chair within proximity of the park’s bike/car/pedestrian intersection and spend my time shouting at cyclists blowing through the stop signs, opting to ride their bikes along pedestrian pathways, or yelling obscenities at innocent pedestrians who question them.

Then, during one of my truncated walks, it dawned on me. Like a bolt of lighting; like a brainstorm from an unknown source; like a bicyclist zooming through a stop sign, it struck me. No, not the cyclist, although that was close,

If you have done the rudimentary arithmetic regarding my age, let me give you another hint. I grew up when this park was patrolled by the famous park ranger known as Miss Barnes, although she had married and taken her husband’s name. She maintained control over cyclists in the park with the threat, often carried out, of a nightstick in the spokes! That’ll get your attention!

I harbour no illusions that my vocal calling out of these scofflaws will cause any of them to rethink the possibility of the potential damage they can cause by cycling recklessly through a park. But it may well prove to be cathartic, it will do my lungs a world of good and may even afford me the opportunity to reconsider that whiskey tasting option as I wait for infractions. 

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