Monday, July 20, 2009

Surprise Present

Sometimes things happen that really make me think the concept of karma isn’t entirely flawed. One of those things happened to me this week when I received an email from my beloved husband entitled Mountain Bike for Sale. I was intrigued by this as we had agreed there would be no new bikes for me for quite a long time, well at least the next couple of years, unless I actually got off my butt and trained for something truly Epic. I’m not training for something truly Epic as I want to have the freedom to ride different stuff if the mood takes me, rather than long endurance rides come hell or high water. So what could possibly be in this email? A new singlespeed for my husband, perhaps? No, a woman’s cross-country bike. A bike made for racing. A 2007 Giant Anthem. As I read the list of parts on the bike I became at once both excited and apprehensive. Surely this quality of bike would be well beyond my means. And then I saw the price and immediately picked up the phone to make sure my husband wasn’t teasing me. It was a bargain.

Emails were sent, times were arranged and on Saturday I picked it up to take it for a few test rides. Simply riding it on around the lawn I knew I wanted it. By the time we got it home and I took it for a very very fast blast up Kennedy’s Bush Rd I was thinking of it as mine. It is light and fast, with lock outs on the front and rear shocks and a lot less suspension than my lovely Jamis. It goes up hills so well. I was grinning madly when I got home and looking forward to a proper ride up Kennedy’s in the mud.

The next day was sunny and again I got over excited on the road and zoomed up faster than ever before, too fast in fact because I was a bit pooped by the time we reached the dirt. Lifting the bike over the gate was so easy. Not the difficult and comedic struggle I’m used at all. Kennedy’s was very wet still and traction wasn’t great, but the bike felt good and was nimble so even we I started to spin out in the mud I could quickly change my line and find some grip. I almost enjoyed riding this bike up hill, but I was a bit nervous about heading down the wet slippery singletrack with less travel and unforgiving tyres. It went well enough and I was just starting to get the hang of the different geometry when a terrible stick-through-rear-derailleur-tragedy occurred up ahead and Michelle’s hanger broke. Thank goodness for soft breakable hangers. The derailleur seemed fine and was safely stowed in a backpack for the coast back down the hill.

The Anthem felt weird to me going down hill. I’m used to the squishy speedy descents the Jamis provides so I was pretty tentative on the Anthem. It was all good though and the Juicey 5 brakes were great, with good modulation and control. They were singing me an unpleasant song by the bottom so it might be time for new pads. It was a great ride, with the exception of the stick incident, and when I got home I transferred the money straight into the sellers account. So now I have 4 bikes, which does seem like a lot, but I love them all differently and can’t wait for race season to arrive. I can’t thank my lovely husband enough for this gift, it really has lifted my spirits immensely and given me more drive to race after this bleak, depressing winter.

1 comment:

MtbCat said...

Yay! New bike! Your hubby is the best. And 4 bikes is the minimum ...grin!