Cycling is something I enjoy when I am in a park. Think East Coast Park, West Coat Park, Labrador Park, and maybe Sentosa Island (it may not be a park but to me I view Sentosa as one huge park with just more to explore). Compared to cycling on the roads, the park is definitely a safer option for someone like me who isn’t too confident with riding.
The beauty of Facebook let me chance upon this photo some days back. I had to click it.
A bicycle, stuck right in the middle of a tall tree? Fascinating!
Now, what kind of story does the bike and this fir tree have to tell if they could talk? Rumour has it that a young boy went to war in 1914, left his bike chained to a tree and never came back. The tree apparently grew around the bike, pushing it 7 feet above the ground, nearly 100 years later in Vashon Island, Washington State. The tree is still standing tall in Puget Sound and is locally famous.
The truth however, is usually not as bittersweet as we may want it to be. According to a newspaper report, there was no war story. Just a kid, uninterested in his bike which seemed a little too small, conveniently left his bike behind and forgot all about it. The mystery, however, is did the bike end up so high up there? Another source say “trees do not grow upward from the base of the trunk, they grow from the tips of the topmost branches. Trunks expand outward, not upward, so that if, for example, someone carved a name at eye level on the bark, that name would stay at eye level for the life of the tree.” Sometimes science really takes the romanticism out of a lot of things…
Mysteries like this intrigues us and gives us room to be imaginative. This is how good stories come about. Berkeley Breathed wrote a story around this very bicycle titled “Red Ranger Came Calling” and I believe this was one of the author’s most popular writings. Other good news revolving around this oddity included someone winning $10,000 in a competition in 1993.
It seems abandoned bicycles are now quite a common sight, including New York. The Greene Space presented WNYC’s Abandoned Bike Project and wants to turn these neglected bikes into art. How creative!
What other items do we commonly leave behind…? For me, it has to be the umbrella! I lost quite a few… Those umbrellas would have some stories to tell too, wouldn’t they?