Philemon owned a bicycle. He
could be seen walking it to the market every Tuesday and Thursday.
The bicycle would come back laden.
It was a heavy Raleigh bicycle from the factory
in Nottingham, England. The pump still worked, but the rubber hose
had long since perished, so it was necessary to hold a piece of wet cloth between
the pump and the valve in order to put air in the tires.
When Philemon wasn't looking we would
attempt to ride his bicycle. We were too small to raise a leg over the cross
bar and still be in a position to pedal. Steering was impossible. Much damage was
caused. And he would get furious.
But he couldn't beat a big drum until his wife discovered he couldn't
actually ride his bicycle. She laughed for a long time when she found out.
And Philemon just grinned at us because we no longer had power over him.