Saturday, May 19, 2007


I have my bike, and it's all MINE. In the past I've riden my mother's bike (1970s vintage), my sister's bike (14 year old girl's mountain bike), and exercise bikes at the gym. But now I have a shiny bike all of my own. Woo hoo!!!

I feel like I ought to follow Dietgirl's example and come up with a name for my bike. She's definitely a girlie, complete with pink helmet to ride her in. Maybe I should put ribbons on the handlebars? (Joking aside, I quite fancy a basket on the front, although I've got proper panier racks for a slightly more "bikey" solution to carrying my junk to work).

Anyway, yesterday I had a brief frisson of excitement at 1.30 when I realised she was ready, but I couldn't actually pick her up til this morning because I was out last night at the rugby. So this morning, when the shop opened at 10am I was there, ready and waiting. I handed over my credit card, picked up my free bike maintenance CD (realistically I suspect that my idea of bike maintenance will be "find nearest bike shop, drop bike off" at least for a while, although they do do maintenance courses which I might go on if that's proving too expensive and annoying). I bought my helmet and a big f*ck off lock to secure it to the bike racks at work. We do have CCTV too, but we're also opposite a really scabby job centre. My office window overlooks it, and I don't want to trust my bike near that lot without a huge lock.

Then I set off back home. In hindsight, although it didn't involve much pedal power, starting at the top of a hill and lifting my feet off the floor probably wasn't a good idea until I got used to the brakes... But I made it to the bottom without flying over the handlebars, and started off uphill. A bit of fiddling to try to get used to the gears took place, together with a bit of a wobbling as I got used to balancing on two wheels at speed. Well, when I say speed... And the traffic, and the pot holes. And the two right turns I needed to do when I was too scared to release the grip of death on the handlebars to do arm signals.

But I made it home safely, and I'd guess that what I did was nearly half my commute to work, which gives me confidence that when I'm a bit more used to the bike it will be a piece of cake to get in and out of work on the bike. To be honest, my main concerns are the safety ones (for the bike and for me), and carrying the stuff I need rather than whether I'm fit enough to do it. By the time I got home I was really enjoying it, a bit of light exertion, the wind whistling past my ears, the exhaust fumes (OK, not that bit). I think I'm in love.

So now she's propped up in the hallway (no way am I putting her in my scabby garage just yet) so I can look at her all week and remember I'm not allowed to ride her.

Although there's something I need to pop out to the shops for later...



It seems that after the marathon I will be making my way to this pub/hotel for some food/drink/talk about running with some people from the RW website. If anyone is in the Edinburgh area next Sunday afternoon and wants to come and say hello, you're invited too. I can't guarantee what state I'll be in, but even if my feet hurt hopefully the medal round my neck will more than make up for it.


Blogger fluffyhelen said...

I am looking forward to buying a bike very soon too! I am set on buying a Raleigh Chopper but my boyfriend says it's a "man's" bike.

Psh. It'll be my bike.

Go for the pink ribbons. =D

12:35 PM  
Blogger t__m__i said...
very comprehensive article by someone from the Thames Valley Police Cycles Unit. Sorry it's a doc but wordpad can display it.

1:29 PM  
Blogger t__m__i said...

1:31 PM  
Blogger KiniWoman said...

Post a picture of you and your bike! :)


8:57 PM  
Blogger Lainey said...


Good luck for Sunday - I'm sure you will bag a great time.

I'm afraid I can't meet up on Sunday though. I'm at Scout Camp (it's the centenary camp- don't you know!). Enjoy Edinburgh!


2:10 PM  

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