I’m keeping up with the Bike To Work Challenge. The challenge also sends out Bicycle Commuter Diaries. And this is one for Beth Ament…
Bicycle Commuter Diaries: Back in the Saddle
By: Beth Ament
With the cooler weather approaching, I decided it was time to dust off my bike from junior high school and commit to riding again. Yes, that’s right: I wrote “junior high school.” The last time I rode a bike was for approximately 7 minutes a year ago in beautiful, flat Florida. I rode my mother-in-law’s bike for about five minutes until I realized she had two flat tires. I tried to ride for 2 more minutes until I decided maybe I should get off the bike. Needless to say, I’m not a huge cyclist, which makes the notion of dusting off an old bike to ride sound even more arduous.
The Bike To Work Challenge gave me the perfect opportunity to test out getting back in the saddle. It would be just like when I was 12 years old! I could hop on my old-school, vintage Murray road bike and feel the wind in my hair as I cruise down the street feeling a sense of independence.
After confirming with my father that my bike was, in fact, twenty years old, I decided it might make sense to have it checked out. I have a DIY nature, so I took my bike to the nice folks at SOPO bicycle cooperative in Grant Park. I like SOPO because they don’t just fix your bike for you. Instead, they actually assist and guide you as you fix your bike yourself. SOPO’s “employees” are volunteers and they take donations in exchange for their expertise. The gentleman who helped me was extremely knowledgeable and checked my brakes, tires and gears. He also explained that bike companies discontinued making the types of pedals on my bike because they snap off… Enter paranoia, stage left!
Read on here. Thanks for visiting SoPo!