I have always had fear for heavy machinery like generators, escalators, some lifts and even bicycles! Yes, I said bicycles. I used to think that heavy machines could develop a sense and turn against humans (weird? I know). I remember having a tricycle as a little girl. When I was about 6 years old, my mum felt I was old enough to ride a bicycle. She took out one of the tyres of the tricycle and on my first attempt at riding my “new” bicycle, I fell off. I would not step on a bicycle again until the 1st of September 2018, over 17 years after!
ACE Charity in partnership with Rydefit organised a spinathon on the 1st of September 2018, to raise funds to procure 500 Shoes That Grow™ for children in a local primary school. The event was planned for over 8 weeks and finally the day came. I walked into Jabi Lake Mall at 6am on September 1st 2018 and there were Bikes! The 24-hour spinathon had begun and the energy was great. The tutors, the staff, the volunteers, the riders, the SMILES, the sweat, all present to spin for a cause. One word? Remarkable!
High on energy, I decided to join the spinners (to be honest I didn’t want to be left out). I sat on the bike, followed the instructions from the instructors and I thought to myself ‘this isn’t so bad after all. Few minutes into the spinning we raised the gear and it seemed like fun until I felt I had no control of my legs. Instead of my legs spinning the wheels, the wheels were spinning my legs! While I was trying to figure that out, I lost the rhythm and my feet slipped out of the pedal. I started thinking to myself, ‘it’s happening, my fear of machinery was finally justified, the bikes have turned against me, they’re going to throw me up in the air and I’ll get hurt, will I be carried out on a stretcher? who will call the paramedics? Wait there are no paramedics in Nigeria…’, these thoughts flooded my mind in few seconds that seemed like forever but by the time I snapped out of the chaos I was creating in my head, I only saw a bruise on my shin. “Only” not because it was not painful, but because compared to my imagination it was nothing.
I got off the bike for a breather, dressed my bruise and to my surprise, I wanted to spin again! I did spin again and again and again. We spun for 24 hours and we were able to raise over 3 million naira for shoes! I felt very happy and fulfilled that we would be able to put smiles on 500 precious faces and more so, that I had conquered my fear of bikes and I did it for a cause. Want to know what’s more amazing? The shoes have arrived Nigeria and the outreach is tomorrow. WATCH THIS SPACE!