did you?

“Did you hear about the two cyclists?” A cyclist—a stranger—asked me.

“No, I hadn’t.”

I had stopped to appreciate all the details of this roadside memorial. The flowers are half gone, but I could tell someone very beloved passed away here. The framed photo. The personal effects. As I would later learn, someone’s wife passed away here. Someone’s mom. A person.

“Look at this.”

I did. It was hard to look away.

“Whoever created this did a beautiful job.”

“I agree.”

“Every day is a gift. There are no guarantees.”

“Agree 100 percent.”

Without being able to contribute something more meaningful to the discussion, I got back on my bike and cycled away. Maybe 40 minutes later, the cyclist and I crossed each other on the Fox River Trail.

“We have to stop meeting like this!” He exclaimed with a wide grin.

I smiled and kept cycling.