WHEN my daughter was rising five I had a love affair.The object of my desire was yellow,not too fast and once chucked me but I was smitten - and I guess I still am.
APPARENTLY we're all getting on our bikes again, but this time it's to avoid rising fuel prices rather than pedalling the country in search of a job.
It was of course former Tory MP Norman Tebbitt who suggested we cycle our way to employment but I firmly believe everyone should have a motorbike moment, and I remember mine with deep affection.
When my daughter was about to start infant school in Hayes I was asked to return part-time to my old teaching job in Greenford.
Though the head kindly organised my hours so I could take her to school in the morning, and meet her at home time, I knew transport would be a problem.
I did not then own a car of my own but the moment I saw a hard sell campaign for a range of brightly coloured mopeds advertised by Twiggy, I was hooked.
In the blink of an eye, my startled rising five was being wheeled to school, precariously perched on the back of a canary yellow moped, her packed lunch swinging jauntily from the handle bars.
At the school gate, my crash helmet slammed on my head, my daughter would wave me off as I soared on to the great Greenford highway at speeds of - ooh well, 30mph tops.
I loved that bike, even through the sleet and snow. I fretted when it stalled; I pined while it was being serviced; I even forgave it when it threw me like a bucking bronco.
Fisher junior saw it as a step up from her seat on my old push bike, where she had sat like the Queen of Sheba as I pedalled up the hills of Hillingdon, and even tolerated the shame of being picked up late from school when I limped in late with my bike, having broken down yet again.
The trendy image I thought I presented, was cruelly crushed one winter's day when I stag-gered into a newsagents in Hayes, having driven through a freezing, blinding rainstorm.
Dressed perfectly for the conditions I thought, I could not understand why the shopkeeper was laughing at me.
With tears rolling down his face he pointed at my transparent plastic mac (which I was wearing over a fur jacket) to say: "You look like a hamster that's been squashed into a polythene bag!"