Back from the Christmas Holiday, my bus card was invalid. I didn’t wish to renew it for several reasons: I stop waiting for the bus, being in traffic, avoid catching some germs and save money. The best way to do it was to buy a bike. So, I went to the first bike shop I saw and bought the cheapest bike. The kind of, 15th hand, 30 years old and rusting.
Thus, the first time I used it to commute, the chain stuck itself mid-way. As I couldn’t sort it without a screwdriver, I had to walk the other half way to work. But it still was better than the 2nd time where I walked 45 min. Since then, I know that I must avoid changing too often the gears to number 6 and the chain wheel to 3, even more if I considered the fact that it takes me sometimes 1 min to change it. Therefore I can’t go very fast with this bike.
As I didn’t do sport for a while, the 2 first weeks were hard, I had pain in my buttock and my legs during the uphill climbs. However I didn’t surrender, I’m still young and full of energy and so my will cannot be beaten, except when I’ve been overtaken by a grandma and grandpa riding a bike.
Drive on the left side is a bit disturbing in the beginning, but it’s just a habit to have. But not as much as the rain. I’ve arrived several times completely soaked at the office in order to have just enough time to get dry before getting in the rain at the end of the day.
Since my old bike is my main transport, I secure it with a resistant lock. I had the opportunity to test this when my key broke inside the worn lock by the constant rain of January and February. I was then forced to ask for help from the local hairdresser and her stepladder to free my bike. While I was bearing the bike, she got the lock upside the traffic sign, scratching my finger in the meantime. At least I didn’t attach it to a street lamp.
But, the most annoying thing is certainly the creaking sound that it does the non raining days. It must be so use to rain that it is suffering of it absence (English bike). These sounds which tell me “I’m going to die soon” revealed my position around 100 meters, and it is very uncomfortable to see people stare at me on my way. So, I hurried to a bike repair store in order to lubricate it and “control” it, knowing perfectly that it would be cheaper to buy a new one than to fix this one. The creaking restarted one week later. So now, I cross my fingers in hope that it will hold until the end of my journey in England.
Nevertheless, I’m not the only one to get jinxed with transport since my colleague has been declined 3 times by the bus driver because he didn’t have coins or didn’t know his bus stop’s name.
In spite of these few casualties, it allows me to be freer, to go faster than the bus and to practice a physical activity.