It’s harder than I thought…

So, selling my car is a lot harder than I thought it would be.  I don’t mind waiting (except for bike fever increasing with this beautiful weather, and the reminder every time I get on Winnie the Schwinn that she is made for a much shorter woman than me), but I’ve had to teach myself about my car, and car repairs, and all sorts of other facts that will immediately become useless once I sell the car. And, I am not a confident negotiator/bargainer.  But, it’s all a learning experience right?

On another note, the father figure has become reconciled and even become supportive of the choice to go carless. He’s been helping me some with dealing with sale negotiations, and even offered to buy me a bike today so that I could “do” going carless right.  I refused, mainly because I want to feel free to get whatever I want, and because it seems like it’s time to become more independent.  And, since going carless is more about the activities and engagement I want to experience in my life, I said if he wanted to spend money on me that I’d prefer that we go on a trip together. So, it looks like we’ll be in vacation planning mode soon. In the past we’ve gone to the beach in Virginia and Georgia, to Michigan, to Europe, and to Peru.  It’s been a while since we’ve done a vacation, so I’m really excited about this possibility. Any suggestions on locations?

I talked to Roommate over Cinco de Mayo margaritas, and he was, of course, lovely about offering to take me to the grocery store or helping in emergencies.  Just more good feeling coming my way. And people who I would have expected to give me a hard time have been overwhelmingly supportive — helping me talk through price negotiations and generally listening to me ramble.

In other news, I am now officially done with the semester. I feel like this:

Victory pose after my first 5k

I stopped in at Freeze Thaw on Wednesday to ask about replacing the stem and seat post on Winnie (I really should take a picture of her!) to make her more my size. Justin, my new best friend, didn’t have entirely good news. A new stem is doable, but I yet again have to curse Schwinn-specific parts.  The seat post on the Collegiate is considerably smaller/thinner than modern ones.  And, they didn’t make them in varying lengths, probably because they assumed people would buy bikes that actually fit them!

So now, I will devote the next week to bike research!  Not that I haven’t been devoting time to it recently, but now it can be a guilt-free indulgence. I’m planning on stopping by Freeze Thaw to start the consultation process tomorrow. I am still trying to decide between a new bike, or having them build me a recycled bike. Philosophically, I prefer the recycled bike — but I also have been influenced by all the Lovely Bicycles out there, and will be picky about how it looks, the key features, and, of course, finding the right frame size.  I’m incredibly torn between a sportier and elegant mixte (like Julia’s Peugeot), and a beautiful Dutch/English style bike like this or this.

Since I’m not sure I’ll be able to house or afford a “stable” of bikes, I want something that is fun and sprightly for longer rides this summer (in case I ever do want to go faster), but that can transition to suitable winter riding.  I think building a recycled bike (with the help of Justin and crew at Freeze Thaw) will get me what I really want without the price creeping too high. Since this will be my first serious bike purchase (meaning with any intentionality in mind), I know that my tastes will be changing in the future — and that the only way to know what I really want will be time on bike!

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