Mittwoch, 18. März 2015

Beating around the bush-riding out with no intent but having fun

 Now this is a bit weird to me. Not this above, that too, of course;-), but the whole situation. Moritz had called a lot these days. In fact, he had emailed me for months. And called. And called again. And again. I had been busy with a lot of things, and, to be honest, I did not think to have the energy left to do him justice, so I postponed a meeting.

Now Moritz is one of the "kids" I once tutored in mountainbike riding way back then, even before the "Zee Aylienz e.V. MTB Hagen" club was founded. In fact, it was my work with kids that laid the groundwork for the founding of the club. And, in the end, the club and its members were one of the reason I nearly completely lost interest in sportive freeriding in the last years and kept to myself. Maybe this was another reason I postponed the meeting - and the ride. I did not do him justice, of course. There´s a lesson hidden in there;-)...

But Moritz did not give up. I guess he noticed there was something wrong with the old fart. But he did not go in for psychologizing, as many so-called friends would have done. He just kept calling.

And the other day we met beside the highway, he picked me up, we put the bike into the car and drove up the hill to the Harkortberg hill. I was a bit reluctant not to go there by bike, for it´s half an hour, but Moritz didn´t know the way to the spot, and having not ridden anything for three years, and having a new bike and all. In fact, first he wanted to go riding on another spot that is, frankly said, insane to ride without practice. The spot on the Harkortberg is, pun intended, spot on for dialling in your skills;-). Plus, it´s legal in the bargain and not some guerrilla jump building with debris, rotten leaves and a bit of loam where the challenge is to be faster down the hill than the hill.
 I don´t want to brag... er, in fact, I DO, but I don´t say this, of course;-D, but yours truly also had a hand in building this spot. But in my hibernation sleep those last years, there were a lot of things going on I hadn´t noticed. When we arrived, the first thing we saw were these way cool northshore stunts. Northshore stunt riding originated in Vancouver, where the locals bridged fallen mammoth trees with ladders and modified them to accommodate the needs of fun-addicted technical mountainbike riders. Many of the stunts built illegally are equal to a suicidal attempt, but the guys and gals from the RSC Tretlager team in Wetter certainly know their business. Of course, if you look for big air, look elsewhere, for this is a beginner´s training spot and part of a marathon race (!). But to warm up to that sort of riding, few things are better.
 Just over the corner there was this climbing parcours... it made us think...... By that time, it had started to gently drizzle, but no harm done at all.
 Lowering the saddle is crucial on such a trail. That way you can keep your control better and have more fun with it.

What can I say... we had a lot of fun, doing some really laidback training, discussing lines and moving up the notch. Moritz rocked his new bike...
 Perp...vert?*ggg* Anyway, we just met at the foot of the gnarly rut section of the trail, and I grinned and said: "Yeah, gnarly shaky great" or any such like... he just stared at me with a blank expression replying "What shaky?". Seems full suspension can do that for you...;-D
 We rode for some three hours on end, and I daresay in the end we both got down faster.
 My (insert an insult you´d like) camera´s way too slow for that kind of pics. Originally this pic was intended to show Moritz whippin´it out in full moto style, but, as is...´s just a crappy shot of someone with a funny face having just returned from an orbit mission.;-).

I noticed one thing: I missed the fun in that laidback style of riding. And I missed people capable of actual talking. Moritz had suffered some real hardships in his life, and I am sorry I could not do anything for him in these past years. But I was  surprised to meet this altogether different and special person. Not at all grown-up, but growing up, and grown to meet life, if you get my point. I was surprised to hear he was a druid, too (well, not THAT surprised, to be honest), but it fits. You would not think of it with all that "punk" lifestyle and cool endeavour he shows, but here he is...

I look forward to him kicking my lazy butt, having sessions and  rides and actual talk and those weird jokes. Summer´s just round the corner, and it might be we all will be grilled by the end of the year by some Russian or radical Muslim terrorist or dictator... but still the birds are singing, and the trees will be here. It might be that there are a lot of morons everywhere, but there are still people to have fun with. And it seems, just when you think you have seen it all, and life has got it in for you, a friend pops up like a jack-in-the-box convincing you otherwise.

Thanks, bro, for being a friend.

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