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Man on the Roof June 26, 2010

Man on the Roof

God is on my Side
Back in 2008 during my Empath Yoga workshop, Erica Boucher, our teacher narrated about this guy stuck on top of his roof as flood waters rose. Being a devout follower of God, he knew without a doubt his God would not forsake him.

No Thanks
Soon after, a man on an oversized inner tube paddles towards him and beckoned him to take the other side of the tube - the man on the roof politely declined, assured that his God had better plans for his rescue. Another man on a row boat passed by his roof and asked him to ride up. He said no thanks, being convinced his God would deliver him from this tragedy. Finally, a chopper hovered and threw him a rope. He waved back and signaled, NO THANKS. Later, the flood waters rose higher, over and above the man's roof, drowning him soon after.

DUH!
In the afterlife, he finally met God and the first thing he asked was why his God has forsaken him. God said, "I've sent the man with the inner tube, then the man on a row boat, then the chopper. You said no to all of them. What the heck were you thinking?"

Hey, That's Me!
It was funny until I realized I was no different from the man on the roof. How so? It's about my mountain bike.

Giant Trance XO
When my cross country bike failed, I was a LoneRider without a bike. I obsessed on a Giant Trance XO, then costing P160,000. I didn't have that kind of money, but I felt it would be a matter of time until I end up with such a bike - the universe provides.

Here's Your Bike
Not long after, a friend who ranks high on an outdoor adventure shop advised me to come up with an advocacy for a mountain bike project and I will get the bike of my choice...for free! And they had the Giant Trance XO! I argued that I'd rather earn my bike than be bothered by an advocacy. Next, a relative, after selling his big house was...hmmmm....liquid. After taking him to UP to meet some mtb friends, he asked me if I wanted the same bike parked on the wall. I don't know if he realized it was a P340,000 bike, but I knew he had the money for it. I gave him a polite smile and said I wasn't interested. Next, I met a bike shop owner and race organizer at a PMTB Christmas event. Upon learning I was looking for a bike, he said he had the perfect thing for me. I said thanks, but that I had no money at that point. He insisted I see the bike nonetheless - that is was perfect for me. I said some other time.

Mall Bike
So, now, finally, after nearly 3 years, I get a mountain bike - a P3000 mall bike with a rigid fork and a flimsy frame. I can rip it apart with a can opener. It's an ill-fitting bike that offers neither comfort nor performance. I feel cramped, my butt hurts, my palms ache. I miss the buttery-smooth suspension play of my front shocks. I miss the precision shift on my XT derailleurs. I miss the full suspension monkey motion. But hey, this mall bike is the only thing I have to work with.

Lovin' This Bike
Don't get me wrong. I'm not dissing the bike. In fact I never thought I'd get this excited over a mall bike. This humble bike is my ticket to exploring the farther reaches of Valencia...beyond what walking has revealed to me so far. With it, I got to bike up to 1685 meters towards Mt. Talinis, until the paved road ended. With it, I commute to Dumaguetea and back - usually a 20 km. return trip. That's my cardio. For now, this bike is probably my most prized possession (well, next to my laptop and GPS).

Ending Thoughts
I cannot help but replay the 3 episodes where I could have had a really kick-ass bike...intead of this mall bike. Would I have decided differently? No, I still don't want to fake an advocacy just to have a bike. No, I'd rather have a relative spend his money for his own purpose - not mine. And no, I wasn't willing to take out a loan even on a good deal for a mountain bike (but thank you, Goyo!). To sum it up, this mall bike had my name on it even from 3 years back. Why? I don't know but I have a feeling I'll soon find out. For now, I'm a LoneRider on a saddle.

--- TheLoneRider

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