My Least Favorite Question


One Bike, One Year

It happens like this:

I’m seated around a table with a lovely couple from Oroua Downs––though we could be anywhere––surrounded by a breakfast of eggs on toast with fried tomatoes. The flavor seeps through the bread, salt and pepper. Alive.

Last night I camped (with permission) on the couple’s lawn. In the morning I will cycle the remaining 70km to Whanganui.

They ask the familiar cast of questions:

Who are you?

Where are you from?

What does your family think?

Are your parents alive?

How far have you cycled?

And then it tumbles out. My least favorite question.

It’s more of a statement really,

& it makes me want to gag on my toast.

“Cycling all this way, you must have lost so much weight?!”

Really? I smile and laugh it off,

not wanting to be confrontational.

I wish they would say:

            “You must have such a big…

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