I proceed to peddle, with the wind blowing my hair and the world swirling by. This dream-like moment is quickly halted when I reach the business of Calumet Avenue; where the semi-trucks blaze by and everyone else is in a hurry to make it to happy hour.
It is here that I become increasingly paranoid, looking from side to side while thinking terrible thoughts about those behind the wheel. "I can not believe they are not slowing down for me" or "look how close their mirror was to hitting my handle bars!"
I make it across the four lanes of traffic alive, ready to go back to my euphoric ride when I am hit with conviction. When I am behind the wheel, I am not thinking about bike riders safety. There is only one concern: getting where I need to be on time. If anything, when I see someone on a bike I think they ought to be more careful and considerate of those behind the wheel.
Soon I get over it and continue on my ride, but it is never the same as the first uninterrupted moment. The paranoia never completely leaves, until I am safely back home. Where the pride of accomplishing something good creeps in and the only thing that matters is the memory of the happiness I felt on that first block.