One of my goals in life is to own as little as possible. I find the more stuff you own, the more rooted you are in a location. Sometimes you just have to buy some things, but I try to keep it to things I need, not what I want.
I bought a bike.
The house I live in is about 2 kms from “el centro.” The walk on the beach is really nice, at low tide. At high tide the road is the only way to get there since the beach is impassable. The road walk is ok, but it isn’t as nice as the beach, and in the heat of the day it doesn’t have the cooling ocean breeze.
So I thought a bike would be a good idea.
Bikes don’t last long in San Celemente. The constant salt spray off the pacific is bad for any metal. Add to that the sand and dirt and Bikes have a limited life expectancy. As well I was just going to be here a short time so a new bike would be a waste. The idea was to just buy a beater since I wasn’t going to stay here all that long…. (but that too has changed.)
So I bought a used bike.
The bike I picked up is from a gentleman who was leaving the country and was getting rid of his possessions. It is a little flashier than I really wanted but the price was right… $50. It came with 2 flat tires. I could have had the local bike guy fix the tires but he is located in “el centro” and I am in “el norte” Getting the bike to him requires getting a ride in the back of a truck,walking home, and then walking back to pick up the bike. I did this once and then promptly blew a tube. In order to finally fix the tires I had to buy a new tube, an air pump, a patch kit and tools.
So now I own a bike, an air pump, and tools.
It is a 18 gear machine that was put together out of spare parts. I have been tinkering with it so that I can use about 10 of the 18 gears. Since the road is flat I really don’t need all the gears. It isn’t important to get them all working, but i keep adjusting things anyway. To make things run smoother ( and to try and keep things from rusting too quickly) I needed a can of some type of lubricant.
And I now own some WD40.
After a bit of work, the going is now really good, but the stopping is a little rough. I still need to do some work with the brakes. I don’t really get up to any speed, because the potholes are many, and the sweat factor comes into play very quickly. I usually amble along at a nice leisurely pace.
Being able to just to hop on the bike and bounce into “el centro” for a bite or just to see what is going on is a nice bit of freedom. The cost has to include the extras as well.