Life in the time of corona – Captains log: Day 80

The bike saga: part 2

So after the nice dude came to my rescue, he finally agreed to try and put some air in my bike tires so I can wheel the bike down for them to have a look.

As it turns out, this is not necessarily a simple task and took a bit longer than expected. I waited outside in order for them to continue serving other customers and after a while the nice guy came to explain that he could get some air into the one, but the other one is all messed up right now and my best recourse is to put in an inner tube. This sounds simple enough, so I agree, only, he still has to remove the little nozzle thingy from the rim.

This left me in an awkward position because I wasn’t quite sure whether to wait inside or outside. It felt silly to go stand outside again, like a kid waiting at the headmaster’s office, but on the other hand being inside would mean hanging around in close proximity to the guy who kept moving while I spoke to him and had an emotional outburst for him to witness, only a few minutes ago.

Eventually I wait outside again until they gesture that I can come in now and pay for the tube. What a relief.

As I had other plans for the rest of the long weekend and this excursion had already taken a bit longer than expected, I decided to return with the bike for inspection on the first day back after the long weekend.

On the appointed day I prepare myself to take the bike down to the shop, like a race horse going for an inspection before the race. Its been a while since I regularly replaced the wheels on any bike and especially this kind. Inserting the tube was a breeze, but it took me afew tries to finally get the back wheel into position with the chain in the right spot, and ready to mount the front wheel and then…

Wham! The front wheel has lost all its air over the 2 days I left it unattended.

But I mounted it regardless, and with a lot of effort and groaning I finally took it down the 4 flights of super steep stairs, down the street, around the corner and over the busy sidewalks to the bike shop.

Once again I get to wait in line outside, but as it is a weekday over lunch hour it is not entirely so bad, and before long it was my turn to enter the shop.

I kind of hoped the guy had forgotten me, but alas, he said “You’re back! With the bike! and a smile”. #cringe

After the horse was checked in the mouth (no it wasn’t a gift and the metaphor doesn’t really work) it was determined what repairs will be required and it is booked for a service in a bit over 3 weeks from now. Hopefully it doesn’t cost an arm and a leg, and I will be able to ride it back home that time.

Next challenge will be how to store it to ensure it is safe from bike thieves…..

Be kind. Stay safe.

2 thoughts on “Life in the time of corona – Captains log: Day 80

  1. At my previous place in Jhb, I found carrying my bike down stairs seems to work better than trying to push it (I was only on the second floor though and the stairs are large enough that most furniture can be carried there)


    1. These are Amsterdam stairs, ie steep and narrow. I found going down easier, raise it 90° so only the back wheel touches the steps and walk it down. Going up doesn’t work like that because it’s too steep/I’m too short. So then I carry it, but the turns are super difficult because it’s so narrow.


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