It has been 10 years since I've cycled anywhere, and I wasn't very good back then. About 5 years ago I was admitted to hospital with an ear infection that has thrown my sense of balance slightly off, so I'm kind of worried about getting back on a bike.
A friend has kindly given me her old bike, that has been sitting in storage for about 10 years, but when I sit on it, I am literally 'en pointe', only the tip of my big toe touches the ground if I stretch (if I'm in my work shoes, I can't touch the ground with both feet). The saddle is as low as it can go. Should i try to relearn with this bike, or should I buy a smaller one? (I'm only 5ft 1, I'm not sure I'll find a decent used bike)
The plan was to cycle to and from work, about 2 miles each way, and around the village over mostly paved roads, and if I was still cycling in 3 or 4 months to buy a newer, better bike (the bike I've been given was a very cheap, basic model when she got it 13 years ago, not that I'm going to refuse a free bike). By then I would (hopefully) be good enough to start following the trails in the woods 3 miles away.
I really want to get in to cycling, and bad equipment won't help, but on the other hand I don't want to spend masses of money on a bike I'm only going to ride twice...
So, opinions. Do I stick with the slightly too big but free bike, or buy a different one? If I do buy, what should I be looking for (I'm in the UK, with one LBS that gave the free bike a safety tune up but didn't really advise me, if that makes any difference)?
Also, gears confuse me. What sites/videos give the best explanation on how to use them?