Golden Gate Park is the largest park in San Francisco, a bit like Central Park in New York but not quite as big, there are many things to do there, many lakes, a golf course, museums, Chinese Garden, botanical garden amongst many other things.
I haven’t ridden a bike since December 2014. In 2015 I was struck down with a thyroid condition which led to me losing most of my muscle tone and contracting Rheumatoid Arthritis, which meant I had no strength and apart from that my joints were very swollen, especially my knees and fingers which meant no cycling! Toward the end of 2015 I started to get better and by 2016 my muscle tone was coming back, however during 2016 I lost my business due to my illness. I later decided to make the best of a bad situation and do some traveling, I didn’t have any money so I sold all my personal belongings from a three bedroom bungalow and with the money I made from selling all my stuff I put together a plan, to try and do the things I might have if I had gone before I had my children, trying a little couchsurfing, helpxing etc etc, in order to write a book about my adventures and reasons for doing it.
The quite underneath the pirate statue reads : I like to think this symbolises me at this moment in time, roaming the world in search of adventure!!
My youngest boy was joining the army and to be honest with you I felt bereft, losing your children to adulthood is not easy to accept, anyway to get back to the cycling, because I was traveling I had no opportunity to cycle and then I broke my leg in Thailand in October 2016 which was definitely not conducive to cycling. I had the opportunity a couple of times since, while in Europe but was a bit scared and nervous in case I fell off and because I was on my own.
Well now I’m in San Francisco and Finbarr has kindly offered to lend me a bike, we talked about cycling over the Golden Gate Bridge but I was still nervous so today, Ingrid, Finbarr’s wife lent me her bike to go to the GG park. I was a bit shaky when I got on, mainly because it is such a heavy bike and I was cycling on the right hand side of the road as opposed to the left which has become automatic living in the UK.
It was a very special day, I realised how much I missed cycling, the park has cycle lanes and is easy to cycle around, there are special places of interest dotted all through the park, there are some parts where you have to cross the main road but I just used the crossings when I was a bit unsure.
The sun came out this afternoon and it was lovely and warm, I wore my Bynea cycle gear to ride, it felt so good to be back in the saddle and also to be wearing my cycle gear again. I was still a bit nervous about coming off as my knee was clicking quite a lot and painful at times but on the whole I loved it, I just cycled round with a permanent smile on my face, taking it easy and stopping quite often to admire the flora and fauna.
I stopped by the lily pond which was devoid of lilies but saw a crane, as I was about to take a photo he flew from one part of the lake to another and the photo caught him mid-flight, such a splendid sight, such a huge wingspan and such an elegant glide! While there I met a lovely lady from San Francisco and we chatted about our lives, I love meeting new people!
In other parts of the park I sat amongst the large dandelion like flowers, sat on the bench by the lake, watched the waterfalls, watched the other people in the park enjoying the beauty, again the trees are wonderful and many different species are housed in this park, willows, cedars, redwoods and many others.
There are a couple of lakes where you can just sit and enjoy the peace, a golf course, a polo field, bowling green. There were supposed to be lessons today at the bowling green but when I got there, there was no-one to be seen so I just carried on cycling. It was a wonderful day and when I got home Ingrid had made a lush turkey chilli with corn bread! It was just amazing, I also went shopping this morning to Trader Joe’s with Ingrid and another shop I forget the name of, we did the weekly shop before I picked up my laptop from the repair shop! $95 just to fix the wire, less said about that the better!!!!!