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A Picnic on 2 Wheels

July 01, 1998|CINDY DORN

When my daughter announced she was ready to lose the training wheels on her bike and ride solo, we packed a picnic and headed for the local park. It has a big wide bike path.

Before long, she wanted to go to the park again. And again. And again. The better she got on the bike, the better I got at packing a picnic.

These days, I keep an ice chest in the car, along with a laundry basket full of picnic supplies: tablecloth, dish towels, napkins, paper towels, plastic storage bags, trash bags, foil, a small cutting board, a sharp knife, paper plates and cups, plastic cutlery, a can and bottle opener, a corkscrew, a small bottle of olive oil, salt, pepper, sunscreen, a first-aid kit and a flashlight.

As we learned more about balance and bravery, not to mention faith and patience, we became more adventurous in our picnic choices. We tried different deli salads, crackers with an assortment of spreads, a loaf of bread or a baguette, cheese, tomatoes, olives, melons or berries and puddings.

But the best picnic was when we bought fresh crab legs and cooked jumbo shrimp from the market (the butcher opened the legs and rinsed the legs and shrimp before he wrapped them), a couple of lemons, some coleslaw, watermelon, lemonade and, for dessert, happy-face cupcakes.

We went a little over budget, but we were celebrating. She rides like the wind now.

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