It has arrived. It is strong and glossy and ready to take me places and haul things. It challenges me, it asks me to be more than I am. It allows me to go car-lite.
I started out with a beach cruiser, but after a few days riding I knew that it was not going to work for me. I found out that I didn't really ride well in a skirt getting a step through was holding me back. The guy at the LBS was great and took the cruised back as a down payment on another bike.
I worked with the brand they carried and even then the choices were overwhelming: urban bikes, crossovers, road bikes, mountain bikes, cruisers... This is a major purchase and will be with me a long time (God willing). I have chosen a Trek FX 7.5 - it is beefier than a road bike, so like a commuter bike. I kept the 700 wheel in front and put a knobby tire on it, and then put a 26" wheel in back with a narrow tire to better take the load of what I put in the bags and get me sitting upright. I'm waiting on disc brakes and fenders. The xtracycle turns the regular bike into a long bike that can haul amazing things.
I have a 23 year old mountain bike I bought in college when they were brand new. I took it with me when I worked for and lived at a state park. I gave it up when my girls were little,having hung myself up on a fence at 8 months pregnant, but later it was my on-campus transportation in grad-school. I've had it out again as I attempt to get in shape again for the xtracycle. It is very heavy steel and I have big knobby tires on it. It's still good for the trails here. I'm feeling some old injuries that have turned chronic and invasive. I may just have to deal with that. I don't want to be sedentary.
flu thought: I had a lunch with a nurse yesterday who had studied flu before. I already knew that flu travels in waves, but she pointed out that the Spanish flu of the early 1900's had a spring wave and a fall wave. The spring variety was relatively mild and those who got sick and recovered were then inoculated for the deadly fall wave. It is the fall wave that we think of when we remember the Spanish flu 1918.