I awoke this morning early as it was 07:00. The skies were cloudy and so I decided to just relax at home and that was the plan until the sun magically appeared. It was warm and humid and I thought that a nice bike ride would be appropriate. After all, there are less cars on the road on Sunday mornings and that would make my ride a better and safer ride.
So I embarked around 09:00 and went to a park that I enjoy where every loop is 1.9 miles. Even if my bike is only three years old I have already spent 40 dollars to replace a flat tube as well as the inner sleeve. All that because of a bit of racing on a bad road. As well I had to replace brand new brakes as the old ones seemed to be defective. You want to be sure of your brakes. These new brakes had cost me around 70 dollars as well with a tune-up.
Well, after about 90 minutes of cycling at a good clip I decided to return home. Now since my tire repair of last year I had noticed that shifting gears was not easy, and that my gears slipped easily. I did not want to repair this as I usually ride only about 20 minutes when I use my bike. Not worth the effort and price I thought.
So here I am, at the end of my bike ride and I am approaching my house when all of a sudden I seem to be pedaling in thin air. I am pedaling but I am not advancing and worse, I am about to fall off the bike. I know something is wrong. I disembark and take a look at the back of my bike and what I see is horrible; the area where all the speeds are seem to be at a 45 degree angle. It looks like the axle is broken or worse still.
I have no choice so I walk about ten minutes to the bike shop near my house. Luckily I was the only customer there. One look at the bike and the mechanic asks me if I pedal a lot backwards. I reply no, of course. What is the point of bicycling if not to advance forwards…I thought this was a curious question to ask.
He then tells me that what happened is rare, and since it is a cheap bike, the components may have been of inferior quality to begin with. I reply that in my previous years of biking something like this has never happened. It could be just bad luck he replied.
This bad luck ended by costing me 32 dollars. But now at least, the gears are smooth when I shift and the experience of bicycling is so much better. It was worth 32 dollars for me. But still, it seems that every year I have to change something on this bike. I think that from now one I will call it my personal black hole, one that I can ride and touch. But if every year I have to replace something that breaks I figure than in another five years my bike will be a new bike! But at what cost…