As I said last week, I want to get a bike. I want to ride it to work and to the farmers’ market and around the neighborhood in the evenings. I’ve looked for a month now, getting recommendations from my brother, the former bike mechanic, and my father, a crazy roadie who can put in 130 miles a week on his Kestrel. (Hi, Dad! That’s crazy in a good way!)
Following their advice–and my own experience that tells me yes, cheap things are cheaper but not necessarily a good investment (true of shoes, cooking equipment, mechanical things)–I decided not to get the $99 Target special and instead get a cruiser with a light frame and some gears.
I rode the bike I had in mind Monday, but Tuesday, instead of calling and getting a special order in, I just second-guessed myself. This is a lot of money for someone who makes her own clothes. Was I sacrificing functionality for style? Should I get a mountain bike? And if I insisted on a cruiser, should I get something cheap so I wouldn’t feel bad about not riding, if I couldn’t make it up the hills? And would I hate storing it in the apartment’s Minuscule Vestibule?
I thought I had decided, but my internal crazy monologue (crazy in a bad way) hadn’t. Fortunately, work was slow yesterday and I could let the internet convince me. I found this post on Copenhagen Cycle Chic:
When she bought her bike at her local bike shop she didn’t have a “fitting” at the “full service workshop and showroom”. She probably walked into the shop and said, “I need a bike”…
She doesn’t know how much it weighs…Likewise, she doesn’t know how far she rides each day…She rides at a good pace, not too fast to cause a sweat, and the ride is nice enough. She likes the fresh air…and seeing the transformation from season to season. That will suffice.
She doesn’t wake up and make a decision to “commute by bike to work today”. It’s just a part of her day. She just walks out of her flat and gets on her bike. If it has a puncture, she’ll walk it down to the local bike shop to get it repaired and then take the bus or train to work. Picking it up in the afternoon.
Yeah. It really isn’t that hard. It’s a bike; it will be fine. I have the money, I won’t outgrow it, and the hills will make me toned. Even if I have to push the bike up them.
I’ll get my order in today.