Up the long hill on my way home is the neighborhood where two houses held thirteen years of life and my children growing up. I pass by the woods I stewarded, on the road I helped keep the city from expanding. I travel this familiar route more observantly now. That guy near Eberwhite Blvd. still has golf balls for sale in his front yard, and I still never see anyone buying any. These are my bike lanes, this is my Liberty--hard won and newfound again.
I've always known freedom: I grew up on Lake St. Clair. The murky expanse of it seemed limitless; indeed, it stretched to another land. Now, my horizons have shrunk. Like the river, I go only where my channel leads. I'm content merely to reach the end of every day. I'm nearer the ground. The potholes are more jarring, and it's scary when I try to go fast.
I'm getting stronger, though. The other day I made it all the way to Gallup Park. Rolling along again, wondering what's around the next bend.
[Originally published in November, 2012.]