Wednesday, April 17, 2013


I read a lot on blogs about goals, and how setting goals is essential to getting where you want to be in life. Then instead of being inspired I think about how I have not achieved many of my goals. I have not completed a novel or even a really polished short story. I haven't traveled as much as I would have liked, and I haven't enabled my kids to become bilingual while their minds are still in that language-acquisition stage. Et cetera.
But today, I rode my bike across the bumpy wooden bridge to Bay Farm Island, taking in a crystal-clear view of the San Francisco skyline, and that glimpse of Alcatraz beyond the Bay Bridge, and that scrap of red that makes me wonder if I am seeing both bridges, superimposed, from this angle.
My 3-year-old son was behind me in the trailer, telling me with great seriousness about all the things he was going to write on his Christmas list this year: Spiderman pedals for his bike, more engines and cars for his train table (specifically, Gordon and Emily), Spiderman pants, a Spiderman shirt and Spiderman underwear, and also for his birthday he would like a Spiderman cake with four candles because he will be 4.
I rode through splotches of sunshine and shadows of trees. And I thought, this may be the happiest moment of my life.
I certainly never planned for that. I didn't sit down when I turned 30 and say, "At the end of this decade, I would like to take bike rides on beautiful mornings and have deep conversations with my son." But there I was, and I realized as I pushed the pedals, that even if I hadn't known where I was going, I had arrived.