Titans of Travel

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It isn’t everyday Charlie Conner bothered his wife, Camille. Charlie was a meek, middle-aged man in his early to late ’40s, but it was a special day. He discovered a bicycle that not only one person could ride, but two.

“Camille, this bicycle is special, wouldn’t you say?”

Camille, a tough lady, and aged by giving birth to seven children, looked at her husband in bewilderment and retorted: “You are daft, dear boy.”

Charlie couldn’t disagree more. Could her lack of sight be due to the clouded skies or the backdrop of dilapidated homes and the small winding streets of their neighborhood? How could she not see this treasure?

Charlie described to his no-nonsense wife what was in his mind a wondrous invention. He carefully pointed out all the details, making sure Camille understood all the features.

“This bicycle is amazing. It has two large wheels that connect to the left and right instead of front and back. Almost as if it had wings. The spokes are an incredible number inside of the wheel. Too many to count unless you were a mathematician or obsessed with simply counting things.”

“Including and for everyone’s safety are two headlights in close approximately to the gigantic wheels. Excellent for any bike riding at night. The illumination gives a stern warning to any oncoming traffic and shines brightly for both riders.”

“In the front is a smaller wheel. The wheel is used more for steering a specific direction, but the bicycle can go anywhere you need if you have a wide enough berth. There was just one chain that ran diagonally from the right wheel cog to the chainring. Built to last!”

“And these seats are comfortable, Camille.”

Camille was done. She put her thumbs on her hips, a classic sign of “I’ve had enough” for anyone who knew her. Her children were famous for quickly freezing from whatever they were doing at the time. For her husband, Charlie, at this moment, she was extra annoyed. Her knuckles were protruding as she clenched her fists.

“Charlie, I don’t know why you brought me out here. It’s cold, I have food cooking, and the children are probably up to no good.” With both thumbs still planted on her hips, she took a step forward in Charlie’s direction and tapped her foot.

Charlie downtrodden, looking at this wife, realized this bicycle would not be his. Charlie began circling the bicycle as if he needed to take it all in and make one last pitch.

“Oh, look, Camille, there are even these sturdy brakes. Look at this handle.” Charlie begins to play with the stick that controls the brakes: “This thing could stop on a dime.” In a moment, an idea struck him.

“Camille, it’s very safe for the kids to ride and keep them busy for hours.”

His eyes dropped, and when he looked up, Camille now intrigued, walked over to him, and placed her loving hand on his arm.

“Charlie, let’s go for a ride, and I’ll decide how safe this contraption is.”

Charlie brightened and asked hurriedly, “Will you take a picture with me, Camille?”

She looked at him and with a sigh, “A quick one, I have things to do.”

Charlie yelled to their oldest, peeking through the curtains, “Get me my camera, boy!”