It’s Monday and I like to publish my blog on Sunday so I’m late, again. And trying to not punish myself for it. Part of me wants to just give it up because that is easier but really deep down I want to do it so even if it is a day later, I’ve done it.
This is a very apt introduction to the topic that has been going around in my head for the last week but I had not had taken time to jot down, as I spent every spare moment polishing a short story I was writing for the Choc Lit Short Story Competition.
A few weeks ago, Kofi, my husband and keen cyclist, took part in a ride from Mesaieed to the Corniche, as part of Qatar Chain Reaction. This was in advance of the professional riders who were doing the last leg of the Tour of Qatar Tour of Qatar.
We left Sealine Beach Resort, shortly after Dhur and lunch. Kofi was riding with his friend James who let me drive his Porsche Cayenne! James’ partner, Nora, Kwame and I formed part of the support team of vehicles: carrying all the gear, stopping every so often to cheer them on and protecting the riders from the other less aware drivers.
One of the riders did not set off with the bigger group. With a massive whirl of sand, his driver pulls up several metres behind the peloton (French word meaning little ball, like the English pellet which refers to the pack of main riders in a cycle ride/race) and with a lot of flourish pulled out his pimped bike. He’s all colour co-ordinated from helmet to shoes in Trinbago colours – I know that Egypt’s flag has the same colours. He mithers with the peloton for a several kilometres and then races off ahead of the others and is the first to arrive at the Corniche.
Later, while we were sat on the specially constructed bleachers cheering on the professional riders, this rider who we’ll call Ahmed starts chatting to Kwame. And my son machine-guns him with the following,
“Why does your helmet funny shaped?” (He had one of those aerodynamic helmets)
“Why didn’t you leave Sealine with daddy and Uncle James?”
“Why did you zoom past and leave the others behind?”
Ahmed was all over the place trying to answer all these questions but he could only stammer and stutter in response to the killer,
“You know it’s a ride, not a race?”
Ahmed works with the Qatar Aspire Football Academy, so I may have lost my chance of Kwame being discovered by Barcelona talent scouts and with it my Aston Martin. Maybe I need to teach him some tact, as soon as I’ve learnt some.
I so admire my son’s directness and on reflection it held a profound life lesson. As I struggle with living in the desert, I feel like others are zooming past me because I often fall prey to the lie that life is a race and feel as if I must react to keep up or win. However, from the perspective that it’s a ride not a race, I can choose to wait on Divine directions and I will still finish the race… I mean the ride.
Do you live life as a race? Would you rather see it as a ride? What’s preventing the mindshift?