Much excitement at my house this weekend after this little beauty arrived.
I’d been waiting since December when my old hybrid was stolen from outside a train station in Brighton. Fortunately my insurance covered part of the cost. I put in a bit extra and then had to wait while it was built to order (“We always do the men’s ones first madam”. Er, okay… how does that work then?!).
Anyway, after some expert help with attaching the pedals, adjusting the saddle, changing my cleats to those ones like what Wiggo’s got, and other such technical things, I was good to go.
The planned route was up past Withdean Stadium (I’ve only done this once before and I struggled, but how hard could it be? I’ve got a snazzy new bike!), down Woodland Drive, and along to Hove Park.
Here’s the thing. If I’m honest it *could* have gone better. If I’m really really honest, it was quite possibly the worst ride I’ve ever done. In fact, even calling it a “ride” is stretching the definition of the word “ride”.
Strangely, the uphill, while difficult, was ok. I mean, I had to stop three times to get my breath back but I made it.
It was the downhill bit that threw me. Not literally but almost.
I’d forgotten how steep the top of Woodland Drive is. There I was, leaning over the drop handlebars (is it drop or dropped?), with my feet attached to pedals that I’m not entirely convinced I can get out of, wobbling because I’m going so slowly, feeling like I’m just about to throw myself off a cliff edge.
Followed by a tantrum of epic proportions. And I mean EPIC proportions.
“I can’t ride this stupid bike. WHY did I let myself get talked into this? I’m not cut out for cycling. I’m going to sell this stupid machine.” Add in some swear words and you can picture the scene.
I can’t imagine what people queuing down Dyke Road Avenue thought when they saw a girl in cycling gear, standing next to her bike, shouting down her phone. Well, I can actually. All the gear…?
Now, I know some brilliant people. And the one that bore the brunt of this spectacular episode is one of the loveliest and most patient people I know, which is handy as if I’d been on the end of me ranting I’d have put the phone down.
15 minutes later I was in the car, bicycle in the boot, being delivered home, ride abandoned.
I’m not certain, but I *think* next time I’ll take the flat route…