My grandma (actually my hubby’s grandma) passed away a few years ago at the age of 92. I would often ride my bike and visit her and she would always ask me if I rode my bike to her and how far. She would then proceed to tell me one of her favorite stories of her many adventures. In the 1940’s, She and her best friend decided to go for a bike ride. They started in Johnson city, went to Elizabethton and then to Milligan College. You could see it in her eyes, she was full of joy telling that story. It took them all day but her adventure was not well received; she was viewed a rebel. You see, back then, they rode in dresses, as that’s what girls were supposed to wear and they definitely shouldn’t have been riding bikes. It was difficult but she loved it.
Today, I commuted from Johnson city to Milligan and to Elizabethton, thinking about my grandmother. The joy that she must have felt when doing an all day adventure on her bike. The route has changed a little, the distances about the same; but I’m sure that the same thrill I experience when riding my bike, she experienced it too 75 years ago. And one day I’ll be sitting telling stories to my grandkids or great grandkids, about the joy I experienced riding The Tweetsie Trail and seeing the evolution of my hometown (in my heart).