I think it was mainly the comfort he craved. I used to carry him in a sling, and anytime he went in it, he nestled up against me with a little sigh of contentment.
He walked before his first birthday. And he started learning to ride a bicycle shortly after he turned 1. This entailed lots of hours of helping him guide his bike around the hilly neighbourhood, myself bent over double, holding onto his bike to keep him on course.
It took him awhile to realise there was a connection between how he moved the handle bars, and the stone walls which seemed to try to rub up against him so often.
Here’s a photo of him taken 13th December 2009. I took him to the Advent exhibition at Left Bank and watched with pride as he cycled around (and around), steering and pedaling all on his own.