IN MY SPARE TIME
20 August 2002
"Did you have a nice weekend? What did you do?"
It's a question that I hear frequently at the club on Monday
mornings. This morning Mr. Whitehead was talking about a whitewater rafting trip he took
with his family on Saturday. On previous weeks he's talked about fishing trips he's taken.
Superwoman likes to collect rocks up in the mountains on the
weekends. She has also helped with alpaca shearing to get wool for her spinning hobby.
Each morning when she waits for the club to open up, she sits in her car knitting
something--frequently made of yarn she has spun herself.
My friend Joan's husband does backpacking.
The Rev, another of our pre-breakfast club members, is an concerned
citizens and some weekends have seen him traveling to demonstrations, such as Soul Force,
to work for gay rights.
When I was riding home from Alameda yesterday, my bike strapped to
the bike rack on the back of the car, I was passed by another car with a kayak attached to
It suddenly struck me: I have an honest to goodness hobby.
For so many years I've felt left out of those "what did you do
on the weekend?" discussions. My interests have always been rather...eclectic.
Non-mainstream. We do occasionally go to theatrical events, but biking is kind of what
"normal" people do. It's kind of fun to realize that I have a hobby I can share
with others, that I make plans for the weekend now; I don't just spend Saturday and Sunday
sitting at the computer, the way I do Monday through Friday.
I have a life.
Despite the fact that I always seem to be busy, I've never had a
real "hobby" (except for the computer, of course--but this is life, not
just a "hobby"!). At least not a hobby that one "did" on the weekends.
There was a brief time when I collected stamps. I think that lasted
about an hour and a half.
I've always loved to read, go to movies, watch TV. Not exactly
something that one plans to do on one's day off.
Photography has also been a hobby for me since the first day I got
my Brownie box camera. But a camera is just kind of the extension of my hand. The answer
to Groucho's "something you always have with you." It's so natural for me to
have a camera around that I don't even think of it as a hobby.
No. A hobby is something you plan to do on your days off, or your
vacation. And I have a hobby. I r a biker.
I make plans with other people.
I buy special gear.
I load up the car with equipment.
I drive distances for the sole purpose of engaging in my hobby.
I practice my hobby. I ride over hills (occasionally). This is
something I learned because it was part of my hobby.
I look at catalogues and try to find good prices on the proper
equipment (and I know what a good price is!), look for sales on the right foods, know what
sort of gear I need to take with me to make the ride more comfortable and enjoyable (aside
from the ubiquitous camera, of course). They know me by name at the bike shop.
In my old age, I'm turning into a "normal" person. Never
in a bazillion years would I have predicted this even two years ago.
What did you do last weekend?
Thank you for nominating my entry, Moving On for a DiaristNet award!