The Tandem


“Whatever direction your relationship is heading, you will get there faster on a tandem.”

Our friend Amy sent us that quote when we posted on Facebook that we would be riding a tandem bike in this year’s Endurance Ride. We had originally intended to do one loop on the tandem, then switch to our regular bikes for the remainder of the ride. But somehow that didn’t feel right.

Andi and I celebrated 25 years of marriage late last month. We’ve also collectively worked 25 years at Emmaus. So riding 25 miles on the tandem and then stopping and going our separate ways felt like quitting just when we were starting to get the hang of it. The relationship we’ve built in our marriage and the relationships we’ve built at Emmaus have taken a lot of time, energy, blood, sweat, and tears. They have been peppered with grace from God, and supported by so many friends. These relationships are good, and they wouldn’t be what they are today if we had walked away years ago.

So we rode the whole thing together—100 miles by the end of the day. And though our bodies got tired, the ride got easier as we worked better together and sensed the support we gave each other.

At one point on our last 25-mile loop, riding by green fields under cloudy, cooling, late afternoon skies, Andi started singing Gershwin’s “The Man I Love.” She was singing the first time I ever saw her nearly 29 years ago, and I’ve never grown tired of hearing her voice. And there it was, directly behind me, the soundtrack of this beautiful ride on a beautiful day. I couldn’t have stopped smiling if I had tried.

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