I thought about this for a few weeks. I realized that I have so many misadventures on my bike that I should probably share them somewhere, so here is episode one!
Buying a bike, is even more personal than buying a car. I bought my bike because I saw the girl version at REI one day. I loved it but I hate pink. I told my best friend that if that bike came in red and black I had to have it. I turned around and there she was mounted on the wall. This badass steel beast that is far too big for just anyone. This bike is heavy, 4o lbs stock. Steel framed with a custom flame job on it. I love everything about it. I started saving my pennies and 6 weeks later I paid for it, but they had none in stock, well none with the gears on it. I had to wait for my baby to be assembled in Cali and then shipped up to Seattle. The day she arrived I immediately raced to get to REI to pick her up. Having not been on a bike since 1989 and never having rode in the city, I can hardly drive here, I should have had someone take me to go pick her up.
Nope not me, never had tested the bike, and not sure where things are comfortable I piked her up and thought I will bus her home and then try to ride around my street some before trying to get into traffic. Ok so not having ever used a bike rack, I could not load her on the bus. That driver was so patient, I finally gave up and thought I could ride part way home. Brakes, yeah brakes are a good idea, knowing how to use them even better. I nearly rolled into traffic at a red light 3 blocks down the road. Yeah, this is not happening. I walked that bike from South Lake Union all the way to Georgetown. That was one long damn walk. It took me a week to decide to ride her at all.
The next month I spend every evening riding that damn bike around the track across the street, I learned how to brake, how to change gears and that the seat was not in the correct position. I bought the bike in April and finally put her to a road test in July. My boyfriend at the time bought a bike and we went downtown to the movies and dinner. I noticed on the ride home that the gears were not functioning correctly, I couldn’t figure out why. The following day we rode up to Seattle SuperMarket, an little Asian market on Beacon Hill. We bought some groceries and then we headed home. Ok so coaster brakes do not work when the chain falls off! Yep that is correct the gears from the night before were messed up because someone tried to take the back tire off. All they did was loosen it and the chain was sagging. I was wearing flip flops and no helmet when the chain fell off going down a hill. I managed to get it stopped and my boyfriend put it back on for me, and then left me. He was quite a douchebag anyway. I rode down the hills home with no problems but a ton of anxiety. I got to the big hill, Lucille Street and headed down. The chain fell off again, and I had no way to stop and there were several intersections and curbs to encounter. In a panic I grabbed a road sign and swung myself into a concrete wall. Three days in a chiropractor’s office will fix that, but damn the pain was great.
My first real road test was riding her to work. I waited until October and rode her the whole way. I was so proud of myself. I only knew one safe route so that was the way I went, along the Green River Bike Trail, which gets really damn dark at night. So dark that the second day I rode to work I decided to bus home. Oh and my boyfriend had made me put it on the bus many times, so I did know how to work the bike rack by this time. Secured on the bike an hopped on the bus. 10 minutes later I feel the bus run over something and pull over. My bike fell off the bus, uhm WHAT????? WHERE IS IT? LET ME OFF TO GO GET IT!!!!! Funny thing he wouldn’t call the police, I had to report it myself. Two days later the cops call me and ask about a bike falling off the bus onto I5, I held my breath, did you find the bike? No, they had not, but it did total a car and severely damaged two others, who ultimately is responsible for that? I freaked out, I do not insure my bike and I do not know if they even offer coverage. Why would I be responsible, once that bike is on the bus the driver is the one that should be responsible, he should have noticed the arm moving down the fender. Not like I could make him stop the bus to reattach it.
I took a payday loan and bought a new bike two days later. Eventually Metro bought me a new bike. That was quite the adventure.