Tuesday, June 17, 2008


There's a lot to be said about two-wheel locomotion. Mostly, I'm glad to be back in the saddle again.

About a month ago I had the misfortune of getting my bike stolen literally right before my eyes (well... almost). I thought the safety of my garage would be enough to foil the average petty thief, but alas, my landlady left her side wide open a few nights in a row and that must have been enough of an inticement for the criminal element to swoop in. When I walked around my car that morning something seemed amiss. "What the...??" Had someone moved my bike? (yeah, that was my brilliant initial conclusion.) Then it finally sunk in: OOHH, I get it, someone stole my bike! Well that sucks. Instead of riding to the garden I walked there, through the park, past a drug-fueled tete-a-tete, picking up the pace whilst humming a happy little ditty to myself in order not to fall into despair. I made it there in 15 minutes, but it just wasn't the same. So my mission for the past few weeks had been to get some new wheels.

I purchased my green Trek Antelope mountain bike in 1992 with the aid of my husband at the time. I knew nothing about bikes so he picked it out for me, being that he was a cyclist and could take it apart and put it back together while I tied my hair in a poneytail. I liked it, though. It was chunky and sharp, and made me feel invincible riding it through the park. I was looking forward to trips to and from the Chapelseed garden this summer, so I was crushed to discover it missing about a month ago. All that changed last week when I took some new bikes for a spin at the Amity Bike Shop in Woodbridge.

My budget was limited: basically, I have none. So I was looking on Craigslist for something cheap I could pay cash for, figuring maybe a Yale student might have something decent they're willing to part with at the end of the semester. My hopes fell short - I rode a couple that needed tune-ups or were just plain icky. And then my Economic Stimulus Check arrived in the mail (thank you, George Bush, though I still hate you). $398 - just enough for a bike and a new helmet, with about $10 left over.

I chose the Giant Cypress hybrid - a nice little road bike with fatter tires that make it suitable for rides on hiking trails and paths through the woods, which is about as adventurous as I get. It's blue and it makes me happy. And compared to what I'm used to, it's speedy, too. I like those grip shifters which make it so much easier to ride. I never knew which gear I was in before. So, in a way, whoever stole my bike propelled me into the modern age with this new contraption. All is well again.