Monday, June 28, 2010

The Bicycle

The hubs got me a bicycle. Well, it's not really mine to keep, but he says I can use it for the rest of the summer while we're here. That is unless of course he doesn't get a bike or something like that. Thankfully, some nice chap from his work has agreed to loan him his bike... at least, for a little while.

So, the first night the hubs rode home on my bike. After dinner he shows me. I don't really know what I'm expecting to see. Some fancy shamancy pretty bicycle like I see at all of the bike shops around town? Yes. The bicycle of my dreams, the one that has a flower painted on the frame, the seat, and even has a little basket at the handles to tote important things around in? Yes. An old, mountain bike that is black and red and covered in mud? Somehow the response is also, yes. I hope for the pretty bike, I dread the muddy bike. I met by a combination of both. "Huh. Well. Nice. Thanks." That's all I've got. Not that the bicycle isn't nice or anything. It's dandy. It's a bicycle, it has two wheels with air in them, it has brakes that work, there are handle bars, and a seat. What more could I ask for? And shoot, it's free. That is the best part. No money going down the drain on this beaut. Well, maybe not a beauty per say... but you know what I mean. It's a good stable ride. The rust on the red frame just means it is well loved... Right.

Having a bicycle to ride around on is great. This means I can go into town so much easier and quicker than I could other wise. What takes about 40 - 60 minutes to walk (depends on the speed and determination) only takes about 20ish minutes to ride. I'm so pleased that I will finally be able to get out of the apartment and actually go somewhere. It really gets quite lonely sitting all alone by your self all day long, every day. This way at least I can go sit all alone while being surrounded by complete strangers. My favorite. I am so looking forward to riding a bicycle and going into town, eating lunch with the hubs, and then sitting in quaint little coffee shops while the afternoon passes by.

After the hubs leaves that morning I work on some ever impending business: homework. It never stops. I really wish it would.... nine more weeks... I can make it. About an hour before lunch time I pack up my peanut butter and jelly sandwich, chips, and cherries, water, and homework. I am set. I go down and proceed to unlock my new bicycle to ride into town. I roll the bike out to the road, and hop on. Off and away! This is going to be great! I haven't ridden a bicycle in years! I love riding bikes. ah. I'm also excited by the fact that I will get into town a whole half hour earlier than I'm supposed to meet the hubs for lunch. He will be so surprised to see me sitting out waiting for him! The perfect day.

Or not. There seems to be a problem. The bike does not work. Well, I mean, yes, as far as peddling the peddles, it works great. It's just that, there doesn't seem to be any air in the back tire. Nope. None. Not even a little bit. In fact, I see as I examine the tire up close, that there is in fact, a big fat gash. Lovely. Perfect. No more bike rides for me. I'm pretty sure you don't ride a bicycle when there is ka-phut air in the tire.

I text the hubs, "NO AIR! What do I do?!" He doesn't text back. How irritating. This is an emergency and he doesn't even take the time to text me back. Great. I mean, I know he's at work and all, but seriously, how important can work be when there is Obviously a very pertinent situation with his sweet little wifey?! I text again, "What should I do?"

My doorbell rings (aka, I got a text message) "Where are you? How much air is out?"

Splendid! It's the hubs! "On my way to town. What should I do?!??!" I wonder why he didn't just answer that question to being with? I keep walking. I want him to text. Now! Am I being unreasonably impatient? Again, I can't help but think, it's not like he's got anything important going on around him... unless you consider work important. eh... that's a toss up. I keep walking.

Another ring, "Walk it into town if you can."

Super. Just what I wanted to do. Walk. Walk a bicycle, three and a half miles, in the middle of the afternoon, with the hot sun shining down on me. Perfect. Also, did I mention I am carrying 20 plus pounds worth of crap (aka super old laptop) on my back? Cause if I didn't, I meant to. I am carrying 20 plus pounds of crap on my back. I keep walking. Pushing the pathetic piece of metal that is considered by some a bicycle.

I feel a rush of wind, and see a man on a super nice, really fancy street bike whiz past me. Now that's a bike. I keep walking. Another man passes me on his fancy shamancy street bike. Great. I keep pushing. Two minutes later another bicycle zooms past me. The trend continues. No one is walking their bike. Nope. Just me. I'm sure they are all thinking, "What in the world is that girl doing walking her bike? Why would anyone walk their bike. What a dumb girl!" There thoughts make me walk faster, make me push the bike harder. I feel a trickle of sweat on the back of my neck. It rolls down by back. Another bike with air in both wheels passes by. Surprised? Nope. Everyone has air in their tires. No one I see has a slashed back tire. Oh good grief. Everyone's going to get to where they are going so much quicker than I am. I'm not even half way there yet. My feet hurt. I look down. yup. Those would be flip flops. What was it I just said the other day? I will never ever again walk a thousand miles in a pair of flip flops? Yup. that would be it. Welp, it must be my lucky day because today I get to walk triple times a thousand miles... in flip flops. People keep passing me. This is getting really old, really quickly. I'm sick of everyone riding on bicycles that are perfectly new and shinny and in working condition. My back is soping wet. Gross. I am disgusting. ... snif. snif. Is that me?! Ew! I stink too! On top of it all, I smell like like a skunk who hasn't taken a bath in a year! The hubs is not even going to want to sit by me I smell so wretchedly.

Lunch. The hubs. He will already be long done eating his lunch by the time I get into town. Super. I make this trip for nothing. I didn't want to walk a bike twenty miles into town just to eat lunch by myself. But turns out that's what I'm doing. My steps quicken in anger and frustration. Another man in his skin tight shorts and shirt and fancy bike blow by me. Like I'm invisible. I'm not invisible though. I don't think I am anyway. ...not that anything would change by them stopping and trying to help me. I know what a flat tire looks like, and I know I've got one. I also know that I'd just plaster a cheap smile on my face and say I'm just fine and dandy if they were to ask if I needed help. Which they didn't. So I didn't. Not that I expected them too. I don't need their help. I have two perfectly fine feet. Well, mostly fine, they are after all, still quite broken from the 30 mile walk in flip flops a few days prior. Thank goodness I have my bike at least, it gives me an excuse to hobble along the road. Or gives support at least. Yes. The support of the bike is nice, though the pain in my feet is not.

The hobble into town seems to take forever longer than when the hubs and I walked in the other day. huh. My phone rings. "Yes?" I don't mean to sound so abrupt. woops. I couldn't help it. It's him.

"Where are you?"

huff. puff. How am I supposed to hobble, push a bike, carry a 50 pound bag on my back, and talk on the phone all at the same time?! "I don't know." I grunt, "walking." puff huff. This is exhausting.

"O. I've got to go."

Whew. Glad that's over... I glare up at the intense sun, judging by the suns' place in the sky it is two hours past lunch time and I figure it will probably take me until the sun goes down to make it into town. joy. Phone rings.

"What?!" I say rather impatiently. Hum... I really hope that's the hubs, I didn't even bother to look, it seemed too much trouble to take the time to look at the phone before answering, as it is 120 degrees outside and I'm hobbling along pushing a big hunk of metal, carrying 60 pounds on my now completely soaked back. I should have checked first. It would be just my luck that it would be some professional calling me in for some important meeting and now they are turned off 100% because some rude girl just shouted into the phone. perfect. Please o please o please, be the hubs. Or, family, family would be great. A friend? Let it be someone I know. Please. ...if it weren't though, if it were an important meeting, and they ask for me, I could just say, "Hold please, I'll get her." Then I would cover the mouth piece, and muffle a bit. Stop walking. And then in a very sweet and chipper voice I would sing, "Hello? This is me. How can I help you?" Great recovery. Good plan.

"Hey." it is the hubs (secretly I whisper a little thank you. Even though I was rude, at least he knows me and I can apologize and give an explanation of why I happened to be so unkind).

I keep walking. "What?!" It just came out. Again. Man, I am not such a pleasant person when I am a crippled, because do I not only just have two broken feet, but I also now have a hunch back. And I am relying on a bike to keep me going. Why is life so difficult?

"Where are you?"

"The same street as before. Not much new going on here." I want to get there... now. I want to sit. I want to wash my feet and wrap them in gauze. That would make it all better. Hubby says he is walking to meet me. He's so sweet! I vow to smile when I see him and be pleasant the whole time.

... an hour later I see him walking towards me from across the street. finally. He crosses the street and takes my crutch. Very sweet of him. I just smile and hobble along side him. I told you I was only going to smile and be sweet. The hubs looks down at the tire and says, "Wow. that is really flat."

"Yup." I knew I wasn't making things up.

We go and enjoy a little lunch together and then find a bicycle shop. They can fix it. good. It needs a new tire they say, 'ya think?!' I want to respond. I'm not an idiot. It also needs new tubes. Again, I want to say to them, 'do you really take me for ditz? I know what it needs! I just want you to fix it!' I bite my tongue and let the hubs do the talking. I think I wouldn't say anything nice if I opened my mouth, so I don't say anything at all. After the hubs goes back to work, they try to sell me. Well, not literally, they don't put a price tag on me and put me up for sale. They do however try to get me to buy everything nice, new, and fancy to fix the bike that they have at their store (which is quite a lot). At this point I'm thinking:
1. It's not my bike.
2. Just fix it.
3. If I were to buy all of what you are telling me to buy, it would just be cheaper for me to buy a brand new bike of my liking.
4. I'm not an idiot.
5. Just fix it.

They offer me the nice pretty tires, the ones with flowers and white on them... they think they have me, since I'm a girl, and since I'm getting new tires, why wouldn't I? They are only a few dollars more than the other plain ones. Ok... how much more exactly? ... The plain ones are $20, the pretty ones are $30. That is NOT just a few dollars more I want to say to them. Can they not add?! I mean, I am the furthest thing from being a math genius, but I do know that $10 is not, "a few more" it's a whole 10 more! and when you get two of them (which I would be) it would be a whole $20 extra!!! That is a lot of money. Do you know what you can do with $20?! I could be a quarter of the way to my own new shinny bike with that much mula. Nope. I tell them I want the cheapest they've got that fit the bike. I am satisfied when they look disappointed. A few minutes later they are scrutinizing the bike, telling me all kinds of things that are wrong with it and how I should just fix it all, right now because it is going to break soon. They can't tell me how soon, or when it will break, they just know it will be soon. It would save me money. Again, I do the math in my head, by the time they tell me it's so worth it to do the other repairs, I've got my brand new happy and shinny white (or baby blue or purple) bike with a flower on the frame and on the seat, and a basket on the handle bars. I think I'll stick to saving up my money for a new bike, thank you. Wow. I'm impressed with my mad math skills. I am on a role today!

They tell me it will take until at least 6 that night to fix the tires (it's not even 1). "Sure," I say. Whatever. I know it won't take them that long to fix it. I mean, I could fix it myself by 3 and fixing bikes is not my specialty. Why do they lie to me?

I limp out of the bike shop and around town until I find the quaint little coffee shop. I find myself sitting inside at a little table trying to connect to Starbucks' Wi-Fi. I decided this coffee shop was quaint because I have a gift card and I can't go sit in some little coffee shop without ordering anything, and I know how much they over price their drinks, so I am thrilled to have a gift card. That way, it's free internet and a free drink. ...in case you haven't noticed, I'm all about free stuff (or very cheap). I decide a drink will be my treat for doing a few hours of homework. It's the perfect reward.

45 minutes later my phone rings, it's the bike shop. My bike is fixed and I can go get it. See? I told you it wouldn't take ten hours to fix my bike. But of course I don't go right away to pick up the bike, it's their turn to wait! ha! Plus, I'm quite busy doing important things at the quaint little coffee shop.

Picking up the bike at the end of the day is quite nice. I like the fact that both tires have air in them and are fully functional once again. The hubs and I ride all around town. Yes. I like to ride the rusty red bike.

2 comment(s):

Anonymous said...

In Oregon, one of those fancy cyclists would have stopped and asked if you needed help. Especially a good looking girl like yourself...
Love ya sis.

Cupcake said...

aw. shucks. wish I was in Oregon.