I have a bicycle! Part of my retirement plan was to buy a secondhand bike. I didn’t want to spend a lot on it because I’m not sure whether in fact I’ll use it. Our badly damaged roads are a distinct disincentive, but plans for new cycleways will eventually come to fruition.
I went to Around Again Cycles, who had only a couple of women’s re-cycles, both well out of my price range (I could have bought something brand new for less). Then I visited the Ecoshop because I’d been told they have bicycles. They do, but their cycles are a sorry lot. They’re stored outside, have all had their front wheels taken off, and can be sold only as bike parts. They looked rusty and uninviting. Disappointed I went home and had another look at TradeMe. Last week they’d had no women’s bicycles available locally, but this time there was one, with a starting price of $1, and a ‘Buy now’ price of $20. I asked a couple of questions, then bought it, sight unseen. I thought if it didn’t work out $20 was not much to have spent. We managed to stow it into the hatchback and brought it home.
I’m absolutely thrilled with my very cheap purchase. It’s a Diamondback mountain cum commuter bike in good condition, and perfect for my purposes. I already have a helmet (thanks, Anne). I just need to buy a bike lock, a basket, and a bell, which will probably cost me more than the bike itself. I gave it a good clean, and have been for a ride around the Loop. Parts of the road there are shingle, so it’s just as well I have wide mountain bike tyres. Riding this short distance reminded me how rarely my heart rate is raised, and that cycling will be very good for me. I intend to visit RAD bikes, who help with maintenance, and have booked to go out with Go Cycle who offer free short rides for new cyclists. Then there’s Frocks on Bikes. . . . . lots of opportunities.
“I’m thrilled that I’ve now got a bike
and can go cycling when I like.”