Recently on my bike ride on the East Gippsland Rail Trail I spied a rider in front of me who seemed to be taking his hands off the handlebars rather too frequently. I was surprised to discover, when I got closer, that the person’s bike had no handlebars at all, he was riding a unicycle.
As I passed him by I called out “Wow! I am impressed,” and then continued on my ride. I took a side trip off the rail trail to add a few more ks to my ride and then returned to the trail.The side trip I thought would take me down to the water but unfortunately the road became private at the point of the Lake House B&B.
As I was nearing the finish of my ride I came across the unicyclist again and after passing him I stopped and he stopped as well. We had quite a long chat and I found out the story behind his unusual way of riding the trail. He was a young boy, in Grade 5 at school, originally from Mornington Peninsula and had moved to Bairnsdale in November. He had seen the unicycle advertised in Aldi and asked his parents if he could have one for Christmas. He had since then taught himself to ride and on this day he was riding from Bairnsdale to Bruthen and back, 66km in total. That is quite some distance on one wheel.
We chatted about riding and how his parents might be worried about him riding by himself, just as my son had been worried about me riding by myself, but he said he contacted them at various points on his ride and he said his parents had means of tracking him through his phone. I guess with an app something like my Road IDI have written about the app previously.
I asked him if I could have permission to take a photo for my blog without including his face and letting him look at the photo after taking it and he agreed.
Here is the delightful young boy. He certainly made my day a happy one.