Near-miss

nbc29Hilda switched on Channel 29 News while the coffeemaker gurgled on the counter top. She didn’t watch much TV, but she would rather let Dave Rogers tell her what the weather would be than look it up on her computer. She assembled a three-egg omelette as the commercials droned on. She was not really paying attention, but she noticed that the commercial had been interrupted for breaking news.  Continue reading

Recovery

2018-dogwoodsThe Greenbrier neighborhood was awash with brilliant white and pink dogwoods. The sun filtered through the trees as Emily made her way to school. Hilda trailed her as they navigated the curving, narrow roads. Continue reading

Crash

2018-BRP springWith five kilometres to go, Emily broke from the peloton and sprinted for the finish line. Sylvia and Tashiqua stood up and pulled alongside her, blocking any moves by the riders in the field. Everyone knew what was happening. After the races last fall and the two this spring, Emily was becoming famous in women’s cycling, not only as the fresh new face on the circuit, but for her ability to sprint after gruelling hills. No one understood why a girl from Kansas could do that (except her mother, who did not grant interviews).  Continue reading

Greenbrier

IMG_20150217_095921“It’s just above freezing, Emily. I can drive you to school.” The kitchen was bright with the sunlight reflecting from the winter wonderland in the back yard.

“I’ll ride the long way around, Mom. It’s clear all the way, and there is plenty of room on Rio Road and the John Warner Parkway to avoid any frozen puddles.” Emily finished her breakfast and started clearing the table.  Continue reading

Charlottesville

2018-UVA RotundaEmily carried her cleated racing shoes into the kitchen. She had her long-sleeved winter racing kit on, with a bright orange microfiber buff around her neck. Katharine motioned to the table and set out bacon and eggs. Emily put the bread in the toaster. Continue reading

The Northern Neck

“Enough slack, you two,” Emily shouted and grinned. “Race me home!” Emily opened up on her parents until she was a small dot in the distance. Mark and Katharine were already drenched with sweat, but the effort was keeping them warm on a freezing day. Fortunately, it had not rained or snowed since they arrived in Lancaster, Virginia, but this was the first day of a long cold snap.  Continue reading

Kansas

Mary on romulus (winter)Emily wrapped her scarf twice around her neck and stuffed it snugly in her jacket before starting down 12th Street again. The snow had come suddenly – it had been sunny and pleasant on the way to school. By the time she turned north into her neighbourhood, the white stuff was beginning to stick, in that dangerous phase where the road is most slippery. Fortunately, she did not have any turns or hills ahead, and her Schwalbe Marathoner tires were reliable going straight. Continue reading