Where is Your Happy Place?
It starts the night before, and quick torque check with the cleat wrench, maybe a damp cloth to take off the dust from the last struggle on the diamond, then a careful inspection of the glove, that stitched leather extension of your being on the defensive side of the ball… “Finest in the field”, “Deep-well pocket”, these words have been stamped on every ball-glove I’ve owned since my dad bought me my first Rawlings back in the very early 70’s.
Flash back to 1972…I remember it like yesterday, we went to Peoples Sporting Goods, just a memory it’s self now, in downtown Cheyenne, and my dad let me pick out my first baseball glove, it was signed by Roberto Clemente. I remember dad saying, “Now you’ll have somewhere else to ride your bike”. Flash forward 41 years to 2013, Jefferson County, somewhere between Lakewood and Littleton Colorado on the US 285 frontage road. Sun is starting to set behind disbanding storm clouds creating fiery outlines among the fractured nimbus, same kid, different bike and Rawlings glove, but same destination, riding to the ball fields.
Last week, walking out to the pitcher’s mound, I was hit with how much I truly enjoy playing ball, even though scorching fastballs have been replaced with high arching lobs, the spirit is the same. A glance over to the entrance of our team’s dugout, I see my bike (with my dog’s trailer behind it) and I realize how much a role the bicycle has played in this enjoyment.
Inside I felt like a 12-year-old boy, excited to play, happy to be with my friends and fortunate enough to be in a softball league with a group of teams that share the same passion for competition and pride themselves in exercising sportsmanship. I guess you could say it’s my happy place, but then again it seems like wherever my bike takes me, I end up at a happy place…How about you, where are your happy places?
Happy Riding friends.