The Errandonnee and Simple Pleasures
When I was little, my sisters and I used to play a game we invented called “Sister.” Our variation of playing house, it entailed us making formal visits to each other’s bedrooms, speaking in what we imagined were elegant tones, and frequently employing the term “sister” as we conversed about the goings-on of our lives.
This game amused and perplexed my mother. “Why do you play the game Sister when you are sisters?” she asked us.
“Yes, we are sisters,” we said. “But Sister is when we are nice to each other.”
I thought about our childhood game this week as I followed the Errandonnee through tweets and blogs and read some of the comments about it.
How does the Errandonnee differ from everyday life? Why do errands have to become a contest?
The Errandonnee is not that different from everyday life. Groceries, doctor’s appointments, work. Most of us have to deal with these types of errands. Many of us may already do these things by bike. However, the Errandonnee is an opportunity to see these activities not just as stuff we have to do, but to appreciate all that we can do via bicycle.
Perhaps one could consider the Errandonnee a contest. I see it more like a game as opposed to a contest. Because of this game I’ve had the great pleasure to connect with other people who move around the city or wherever they live by bike, making this frequently faceless world a slightly smaller, friendlier place. We’ve even shared some internet laughs.
Through the Errandonnee I’ve also peeked into places I’ve never visited– Montana, Alberta, Australia, Spain, Fort Worth, just to name a few. These places gain new meaning to me as I glimpse them through a cyclist’s perspective.
The Errandonnee is not competitive, except perhaps for the competition with one’s self to meet all the pre-established (yet flexible) Errandonnee criteria.
This post is a long way of saying, it’s not that deep. It’s simple, like a game of Sister– a way to celebrate and take pleasure in the everyday things we do that we sometimes take for granted.
Thank you, errandeurs, for bringing this challenge to life and for making it so much fun. I eagerly await your weekend posts and tweets.