Learning to slow down

I love biking. I love having the freedom to go different places. Biking is efficient and quick and can be relaxing at the end of a hard day. I have a bike at home that was solidly built for me by a really good man. I could always count on it to get me everywhere I needed to go.

I do NOT love this bike.

bike

The bike

We are currently not speaking to each other due to differences of opinion.

My opinion is that a bike I bought less than 2 weeks ago should hold together – it is not… living up to that opinion.

I’ve had to rework the handle bars, buy a new seat post, adjust the gears and for the last two days I have biked to work without one of the pedals (don’t ask me how – purely done on stubbornness).

The major advantage to this bike though is that I am definitely moving at more of a Guyanese pace. It has been impossible to just fly around town. I spend more time moseying along, chatting to people as I go by. A complete stranger at a mechanics shop temporarily attached the offending pedal for me when he saw my predicament.

Everything in Guyana says SLOW DOWN (except for the mini buses). The heat definitely suggests that you should sit in the shade for a while, walk slower, stop and sip a drink.

This is not always the easiest for me. People in Canada are usually appalled by my walking pace. Here it is unfathomable.

But slowing down is a good thing. People here are of the opinion that there is always time to stop and have a conversation. Spending some time with a friend trumps being on time any day. This I enjoy because it reminds me of my neighborhood in Toronto. That is one place that I love to walk through slowly and enjoy.

All of Guyana, it seems, is determined to become a similar place by teaching me in more ways than I can count to just go with the flow and forget about the time.

Drew Badgley is a student at the University of Toronto Scarborough, studying International Development Studies, currently on Co-op placement in Guyana. 

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The University of Toronto Scarborough (UTSC) is home to a community of active learners drawn from all over the globe, determined to use what we discover – through investigation, collaboration and experience – to make our world a better place. Our campus is an integral component of Canada’s leading research-intensive university, a place where faculty contribute to cutting-edge knowledge, where the finest students are taught by the finest professors. Upon graduation, our students have earned one of the most rigorous and respected post-secondary degrees in the world. At UTSC, we are working together to find answers to tomorrow’s most important questions. And because the search for knowledge must always be conducted in a meaningful way, our campus is continually alive with innovative programming, engaging discourse and dynamic experiences that feed our spirits and enrich our minds. This is how to prepare students for the best possible future. This is how our scholarship contributes to a better world. This is our promise. Because tomorrow is created here.
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One Response to Learning to slow down

  1. dan says:

    You need to visit Dominica while your down there, that’s what I miss about the Caribbean the most, knowing almost everyone and seeing them almost everyday. In Toronto, you see so many different people everyday, it’s easy to feel like your drowning, but down there you stand out. Have fun 🙂

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