I despair about the present generation of children who will grow up never having climbed a tree, built a raft, or fallen in a river, who are placed in front of a television set instead of encouraged to read, and who are allowed to expect life to be comfortable and easy - and are taught to equate hardship with having to wait for the latest mass produced throwaway made by kids in an eastern sweat shop, and independence with having a TV in their own room. So, setting my actions in the context of this eminently reasonable and liberal worldview…
I was out on the 28 today and I saw a family of 2 parents and 2 young girls on bicycles. They were dawdling along a hard-packed grit path about 6 feet (2 metres) wide, and perfectly flat. I was behind them, unnoticed.
One of the girls, aged around 8, pointed to a narrow side path which went for about a kilometre diagonally across the field before rejoining the main path. My granny could have ridden it on the butcher’s bike.
“Can we go that way, daddy?” pleaded the girl.
(The real reason was obvious: Daddy couldn’t be bothered.)
“Because I haven’t got a mountain bike, that’s why,” lied Daddy.
“Neither have I!” I cried cheerily, and swerved off the main track onto the side track and rode along it flat out… and in my ears the tinkling music of the girl’s voice:" That man’s riding along it on one wheel, Daddy."
Heh heh heh heh.