Call me Frankenstein

Snow has arrived in Montreal, in a small dose... but here none the less. The Scrambler has been put away for the winter, still bruised from the accident. A new rear derailleur is on it's way from E-Bay, but the repairs will wait until spring. Last Friday Julie dropped me off at work with the Supercycle and a big bag full of mixed parts. After work I made full use of the workshop & began rebuilding and making the 1800 road worthy again. What began with a shifter and a rear tire, soon spread to more drastic changes. How drastic you may ask? The 6 speed second hand shifter I found, just could not cut it. I actually installed a 7 speed Shimano rapid fire shifter with the original 6 speed cassette. (call me Frankenstein) It actually kinda sorta worked... mostly. Then I decided to be more traditionalist and change the cassette.

Sooo... the 18 speed blue machine is no longer 18 speed.

It is now the Supercycle 2100... 21 speed.
(I hope I have not offended any purists)

A new tire, a rear brake lever & brake pads were also added. Then when I was done... well I had to see if it all worked? (not just the bike... me too) I rode home... hoooray! Monday morning I started commuting to work again. Was I rusty? ... you bet.

The good news is... I still love it.



Not long after I began this blog... someone quickly took an interest in it. Perhaps he was attracted to my extraornadinary writing skills.(e-x-t-r-a-o-r-d-i-n-a-r-y...?)
Considering he's a professional writer & must cringe every time he reads one of my entries, I believe that it was something else.(like maybe... cycling?) Actually the Canadian Tire Supercycle I chose for my entry into the sport was all part of a blog dedicated to it. The Bike of Doom chronicles the results of buying a low cost department store bicycle. This blog helped me along my journey this summer with it's many resources & feedback. It also help introduce my story to other cyclist just like me. (well in better shape than me but...) We two bloggers also share similar weather. (not quite the same... Winnipeg tends to do winter bigger & badder) Cold weather, rain , sleet & snow tend to slow a cyclist down. So he has decided to hang it up for the winter "Last ride, last post — 3,204 Km". I myself am trying to continue... but the longer the ribs take to heal & the worst the weather gets outside, the harder it will be to get back in the saddle. Everything seems to be winding down & I just wanted to say thank you to The Bike of Doom. Thanks for everything.


Slow recovery...

The Scrambler has joined the Supercycle in inactivity. My ribs are still very sore. I have thought of trying to ride but... just getting up in the morning is very painful. I work in a nursing home and have asked many nurses "how long?". They all say it could be weeks. So it is very likely that the Scrambler will be put away for the winter & the Supercycle will have the job of helping me back on the road when I feel up to it.

I have no idea if the ribs are bruised or cracked. Spending 3 to 5 hours for an x-ray (only to be told that there is nothing to do) is not on my list of priorities right now. I use the hopping up & down test. (hop up & down & see if it hurts... duh) When I can do it with an acceptable amount of pain... I will start to ride.


It was bound to happen eventually...

It was bound to happen eventually... I've had a few falls here and there... mostly in the beginning... mostly clumsy. After awhile you get comfortable & cocky... that's usually when you get nailed... right?

When I commute to work, I prefer taking Sherbrooke street instead of the boring old bike path. Early in the morning there is hardly anybody on it... and I just fly right work. I also fly threw red lights & stop signs. (who the hell wants to stop every second block?) In the evening there is significantly more traffic... & those same pesky red lights & stop signs. Well... I do look both ways before crossing an intersection. ( when it's red... yellow & green mean go!) The last km on Sherbrooke on the way back home is slightly downhill. (that means go fast) The light at the intersection was red... but out of the corner of my eye I could see that it was turning yellow for the intersecting traffic. So... no reason to stop... right? However the other corner of my eye neglected to see the intersecting vehicle... a full size white Suburban (the kind the F.B.I use to drive over terrorist & stuff) This vehicle didn't care what it intersected on it's way to making this yellow light. (it's important to note at this time that it is me writing this story and not a grieving widow) I did not in any way shape or form hit the Suburban. The pavement however... took quite a beating. (disk brakes work way to well...) It appears I applied just a little more pressure to the front than the back. (I've actually performed this little stunt in front of my father when I was 12) The result... a forward somersault. (in both cases) I wish I had someone video tape it for me... would have loved to have seen it in slow motion... so I could have pointed out the exact moment I said F***!!! Somehow... I ended up on all fours... don't ask me how. I quickly got up... (probably not) with the wind knocked out of me. For a split second, my reaction was to go yell at the driver of the "Monster Truck", but starting breathing again seemed more of a priority. I realized I was at much at fault as he or she was. (never made actual eye contact) The driver was probably relieved I was alright... but was most probably afraid of my reaction. I finally I began to walk in that direction... ("lock the doors!!! he' coming this way!!!) only to pick up my Scrambler of the street. I was more worried of it... than me. The light for driver turn green and he or she rolled away... neither one of us exchanging a word or a glance. Weird I know... but what are you say?

The Scrambler sustained a bent rear derailleur & some scratches to the right shifter. ( nothing major)

I sustained what I believed originally to be a scrapped knee, a sore right hand, a bruised ego and a slight pain to the ribs. Later that evening... the slight pain... became... well... not so slight. I took the day off today. Nothing broken I'm sure... some swelling... but the beer seems to be helping the healing process. Overall I think I walked away from this one... pretty good.

(always important to note the walking away part)


Still here...

The Supercycle... forgotten and left behind waits. It has spent just over 2 months sitting in my bedroom... being used occasionally as a clothes rack, lonely and forgotten. Next week - end I plan on bringing it to work and getting it winter ready. (I'm not even sure if I'm winter ready) Sorry if I keep bringing up the winter thing... but I never figured on making it this far.This part of my cycling adventure is the one that scares me the most. (so far...) I fear that if I stop for the winter months... I may not start again in the spring. I fear that if I go on... I may get fed up of the weather... and give up. I fear that after being on a superior bike... that this one may let me down. I have been lazier lately... but have tried to do the minimum. I still commute every day and have the occasional excursion. Sometimes life gives you more important things to do... and exercise takes a back burner. I have not given up... but I do feel weak. I want to continue... I want more trips, more adventures and blog entries worthy of being read.

Forgive me if I wander of the trail... from time to time.