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The Boy Who Couldn't Ride A Bicycle - a short story by A.B.King



   Once upon a time in city just like where you live right now, there lived a good little Christian boy. His name was Tommy. The unfortunate thing was that he was the only kid in his neighborhood who couldn’t ride a bicycle. He had been trying to ride a bicycle for 2 years now and has been unsuccessful since. Even his juniors who started learning how to ride a bicycle got the hang of it in months and would sometimes subtly make fun of him about it. Tommy’s friends who were his own age weren’t subtle about making fun of him however; they just got right out and made fun of him. Tommy didn’t like it.It made him miserable and he would often come back from the playground sad each day he went there and go to cry in his room. Something that really stung about it was that Tommy loved bicycles and wanted so much to learn how to ride one but every encounter he had with a bicycle made him an object of ridicule.
   One day, Tommy’s Dad caught him crying in his bedroom. His Mum and Dad had been oblivious of what had been happening. It’s not like they didn’t care for Tommy, they actually did a great deal. The thing was that Tommy had gone to great lengths to hide his little curse (as he taught it was) from his parents.
   Tommy’s Dad persuaded Tommy to tell him what was wrong.
   When Tommy told his Dad everything; his Dad cheered him up and also bought him his favorite ice cream.
   Dad told Tommy that he had nothing to worry about that when he was his age he had trouble learning to ride a bicycle too. He told him that all he needed was a good teacher and that bright and early on Saturday morning after family morning prayers and Tommy has done his shores around the house, plus his homework; then he would give him his first lesson on how to ride a bicycle.
   When the day arrived and Tommy had done all that he was supposed to do, he called Dad to give him his first lesson. Dad suggested they do it in the backyard. The reason was that so that none of Tommy’s friends would see them. Even though Tommy did not know the reason why Dad wanted them to do it in the backyard, Tommy agreed. Mum tagged along to watch and for moral support.
   When the lessons began, Dad just told Tommy to hop on the bicycle and just start riding. Tommy was shocked, “But if I hop on and just try to ride I would fall off”, Tommy said. He had been expecting some super smart teaching technique from Dad but this just didn’t make sense to him.
   “Do you trust me son?”, Dad asked.
   After a little silence, Tommy responded “Yes, Dad”
   “Then trust me”, Dad said.
   Tommy got on the bicycle. He started to ride and then he noticed he didn’t fall off. What was going on. It didn’t make sense. Then he turned back to see the reason why. His Dad was holding the bicycle up and running behind him all along. Just Great! What does Dad thing his doing Tommy taught.
   “DAD”, Tommy screamed as he stopped the bicycle. “That’s not how to teach someone to ride a bicycle.”
   Tommy’s Dad simply looked at him and smiled. Then he asked again, “Do you trust me?”
   Tommy was silent for a much longer time this time. Then in a tone that sounded more like a grumble he said, “Yes, Dad.”
   Tommy’s Dad continued teaching Tommy to ride a bicycle by holding the bicycle steady behind him as Tommy rode all around the backyard in a regular pattern. All the while Tommy’s Dad would tell Tommy to adjust his form if he switched away from the proper form. Tommy’s Dad would over and over again tell Tommy all he needed to know about how he should stay and what he should do for different results when he rode the bicycle. But all the time Dad stayed right behind him holding the bicycle steady.
   This went on for weeks every time Tommy and his Dad had some free time. Until Tommy got quite used to it, he normally had nothing to worry about because he always knew his Dad would be right there behind him holding the bicycle steady; making sure that he does not fall. Tommy got used to the proper form too so his Dad didn’t even have to correct him anymore. The only problem in Tommy’s mind was when was his Dad finally going to teach him how to ride a bicycle? He had been on this same drill with Dad for weeks and it was beginning to get kinda boring.
   Another week came and it was routine time again. His Dad held the bicycle as he rode and rode and rode.  After some 15 minutes of riding it was then he noticed that his Dad was standing near his Mum beside the kitchen Dad door. What? Then who was holding his bicycle steady? OH My! Nobody was. Tommy was afraid that he would fall but then it just hit him that how can he fall because no one is behind him holding the bicycle steady, he had already been riding the bicycle for a lot of minutes now without anybody holding the bicycle steady behind him. It was then it completely dawned on him that he could ride a bicycle. Oh My! “THANK YOU LORD, JESUS”, Tommy shouted in joy and close to tears – tears of joy.
   “LOOK MUM, I CAN RIDE A BICYCLE” Tommy screamed out joyfully to his Mum who was joyfully applauding him at his moment along with his Dad who had a very large smile of satisfaction on his face.
   Riding a bike is like so many things in life. If we just take the first step, take it one day at a time and be consistent with it. We would improve and develop the confidence we need within us to successfully and easily accomplish the tasks that are set before us.

THE END.


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