Monday, February 07, 2011

oh the places I'd like to go

I'm falling in love, and it's with a bike.

My Saturday work schedule is usually eleven or twelve to whenever, whenever usually falling sometime around ten.  Somewhere in there, roughly in the middle, is usually an hour long break.  It's usually enough time to eat and walk the few blocks to the tobacco store.

This past Saturday my break was nearly two hours and involved a walk to the bike shop that is slightly farther away.  I've been needing to start looking around, beginning my quest to hopefully find that bike that is the perfect balance of actually useful to me along with quality and economy.

I've assumed I was going to spend some time making this decision.  I've never really owned a good bike.  The bikes I had when I was a kid were fine.  They weren't the fancy ones I drooled over in the BMX magazines, but they took a beating and came back for more.  The bike I have in the garage as well as the one I rode for a short time over the summer both were purchased originally at that horrid bastion of American made crap, Wal Mart.

I explained to the sole visible occupant of the shop that I was replacing a totaled car with a bike and emphasized cheap and used as being key issues.  He pointed out a bike hanging above us, upside down that he seemed happy enough to pull down for my inspection.

My decision may have been a bit rash, but I've proven myself right by having researched the bike after the fact.  I did take a test drive.  The guy at the shop asked for and i.d. and explained just how far I could actually take the bike for a test, but I didn't have quite the time.

Perhaps if I'd declined the test ride I might have held out and not purchased this bike.  Certainly as I pedaled around the first corner I was taken aback.  The handlebars are shorter than I'm used to, and the bike felt unsteady as I dealt with this thing I hadn't considered.  I overlooked the handlebars as I tested the shifters and pedaled easily and then furiously.  I found a good gear for the terrain and slope and found some speed.

Other than a few turns around the square after work earlier today I haven't really ridden this bike for fun yet.  I've recognized that the short handlebars help make the steering more responsive.  Actually I read it on a forum last night, but then riding today I found it to be true.  And riding today involved to work. 

I put about five miles on the bike within twenty four hours of ownership.  I've also already pulled both wheels off to get it into a car trunk and reassembled it on the kitchen floor.  I've flipped it upside down so that The Boy could see as the derailleur worked while I changed gears.

It's sitting in the kitchen right now, waiting next to the door.  I can feel it wanting to go outside and ride, and I can feel it trying to will it's desires onto me.  I have to go to bed so I can get up and be responsible tomorrow, but I'm already thinking about when I have a day to myself and what I'll do.