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We stared down at Layce’s tire. “It’s definitely flat,” I said. I spotted the culprit—an enormous thorn. I pulled it out and the tire let out its last gasp.

flat-tire

“Good thing you got the spare tube and pump at the bike shop other day,” Layce said.

I furrowed my brow and kicked the dirt by the tire.

“You did not do what I think you did, did you? Layce asked.

“You used three ‘yous’ and ‘dids’ in one sentence and you book ended it with two ‘yous.’”

Layce was not to be distracted. She crossed her arms. “Why don’t you have the stuff to fix the tire?”

“Because I left it in the truck. I didn’t think we’d need it. It’s not like we’re going into the wilderness.”

“So what you’re saying is that only in the wilderness would we get a flat tire?” Layce said,  narrowing her eyes. “Not on a paved trail that cuts across town? And the repair kit is four miles away in the opposite direction. Did I get that right?”

“Yeah, that pretty much sums it up,” I said, mounting my bike. “I’ll ride like hell and be back soon.” I amended, “Very soon. Just take a break.”

“Be careful,” she said.

“Aren’t I always?” I took off, thoroughly chastising myself for my lapse in preparation. After that, everything was going well… until the grasshopper.

He came straight at me like a bullet, hit my neck, and disappeared. I screeched to a halt, and fell over because I couldn’t get my foot out of the stirrup in time.I was lying on the ground with my knee bleeding and my elbow already swelling when I felt the little bugger down my shirt.

Normally, grasshoppers don’t scare me. However, I also never had one up close and personal with my ta-tas. I jumped to my feet and ripped off my shirt. Fortunately, I was the only person on the bike trail. I swatted at my chest and hopped around until I realized… it wasn’t a grasshopper I had felt tickling my chest. It was one of my dangling earbuds. My bad.

I made it to the truck and back in record time.

grassh

ear-bud

 

“Boy, that was quick,” Layce said. She studied me. “Is that blood?” she said, pointing at my knee.

“I was attacked by a grasshopper,” I said, getting to work on the flat tire.

“A grasshopper pushed you off your bike?” she asked.

“He hit me in the neck at 13 miles an hour, then he went down my shirt, I thought.”

Layce raised an eyebrow.

“It turned out to be something else, “I said. She stared at me. “My ear bud.”

“Hunh,” Layce said, unfolding the bike tube and handing it to me.

I fixed the tire and we took off. Everything was going well, until… the snake decided to cross the path right in front of Layce. She screamed like a little girl, high pitched and frantic. She held her feet up high in the air, weaved over to the edge of the pavement, over-corrected and went down the bank. After that I lost sight of her.

“Layce!” No answer. “Are you okay?” I screeched to a halt. “Are you bleeding?” I called out.

“No,” she said tartly. She walked her bike up onto the path. She had pine needles in her hair, her glasses were lopsided, and her bike shorts were twisted so badly she listed to the left. I plucked dried leaves off her shirt. “Maybe we should head back before something larger and more ominous happens,” I said.

“Ya think?” she said, pointing her bike back toward the truck. She took off. It took me a couple of minutes to catch up with her.

“That was pretty funny,” I said. “I wish you could’ve seen yourself, screaming with your feet over your head, riding down the hill.” I laughed.

She squinted at me and said, “At least I’m not the one wearing my shirt backwards.”

 

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Comments on: "Bicycles, Grasshoppers, and Snakes" (1)

  1. Olha Tinyszin said:

    Funny about grasshoppers – look what tried to take a ride in my jeep.

    Olha

    Sent from my iPad

    >

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