I went with my more experienced cousin today and bought myself a bicycle. It’s a black Ideal Ergomax (a Greek bike industry) and it’s something like a hybrid city-mountain bike. I didn’t get a change to ride it, other than outside the store, because of the transport (the wheels and the brakes are currently disconnected), but indeed riding a bicycle is like … riding a bicycle (ok, lame joke, but I’ve been waiting very long to say this). I mean even after 15 years since I’ve even touched a bicycle, I still can ride. The only difference is that this one has real brakes that actually stop movement (as opposed to my learning bike that just pretended to do so).
So, why now, at 32? Well, the first and foremost reason is of course I really need the exercise, and an exercise bicycle (which I also own, and is gathering dust, as most exercise bikes are) is too boring (especially my own, since I can’t even read a book properly while riding). My ultimate goal is of course riding to work, since that’s just 11 km, and all flat. Of course I don’t shun driving and cars, but if I can do the same distance in about the same time, why waste gasoline etc? I’m not such a raving environmentalist, I love driving, but it’s a whole lot more healthy to ride to work.
Of course there’s every chance that I’ll either get bored very soon (I’m dreading late night rides back), or that I’ll chicken out (I mean, riding around through traffic?). Still, it seems a dreadful pity to be here, out in the country (of sorts) and not take advantage of the openness and nature. Driving is fun when driving large distances, but to really appreciate and grok a place, you have to go slow!