|Biking warmup, Tax fun
||[Apr. 16th, 2004|01:50 am]
I’m doing the Rosarito-Ensenada ride this weekend (they do it twice a year; I did it last September, too). My existing bike (a 1988 Bianchi Campione d’Italia, or something close to that) has treated me very well, but it is only a 12 speed, and the lowest ratio is 42:28, or 1.75 to 1 (and this on 700C wheels). I just don’t have the legs for that anymore (if I ever did).
So I went looking for a new bike. I thought I might be able to find one that would do everything well, but I decided that I would specialize a bit. For this trip, I bought a good sturdy road touring bike, a 2004 REI/Novara Randonee. Other than a bit of frustration when I tried to find racks anywhere else (they didn’t fit), it is a pretty nice ride. Taking a while to get used to the STI Tiagra shifters, though; I really want the small right lever to go to an easier gear, not a harder one.
And apparently all the new road bikes expect frame pumps to fit along the seat tube, not the top tube. What the hell? I want to use that area for a water bottle, thankyouverymuch! I’m experimenting with mounting one on the top of the top tube; its elastic barely fits, but it seems sturdy enough (although it cuts into the standover height a bit.)
Also added a rear rack, transferred my front bag mount from the old bike to the new, put water bottle cages on the new bike, and generally prepped it for real use. I had taken it on a short ride during lunch last week; tonight, I got set up for night riding to go drop off my taxes.
The main post office for San Diego is only about 4-5 miles away. I made the mistake of coming by that part of town on my way home (was looking for biking stuff) and it was insanely busy with traffic stupidity. Well, as of 23:30 last night, it was still destroyed. I’m very glad that I biked there.
There were at least two groups of protesters in front of the post office; the first were a pod of Bush-Cheney supporters... I gave them a big thumbs down. (Yeah, we need fewer rights, the draft reinstated, more tax breaks for the rich, and more taxes for the poor. Oh, and all non-Christians will be our slaves, and get those women out of the workforce and back into the kitchen...)
The next group was a freedom-to-marry pod. They got a big thumbs up.
The bike ride went well; I think I’m getting used to this beastie. We’ll see how I feel after 50+ miles, though.