I am a greenhorn from NYC who moved down to Austin for my first "real" job as a software engineer. In college I had a great mis-adventure riding a 50 dollar piece of junk from New York to Philly on a dare, and despite all the terrible things I did wrong, I had a total blast. Now that I am starting to make enough money to spend on things that make me happy (not just keep me alive another semester) I am very very seriously considering getting a nice touring bike and exploring my new home here in the South West ... and maybe one day some place even more exotic.
I found this site from the newbie advice thread, and so far it's been really really helpful. While I don't like to generalize, most bikers I've met on the road have made excellent company and always had the best stories. I met a guy who rode his bike across the country twice in one trip, and the best part, he was impressed by some other guy who rode his bike some other more insane distance. Sure, my 100 miles probably wasn't a record setter but I've always liked to think that maybe somewhere out there, there is another biker who tells the story of that 19 year old kid on his 50 dollar K-Mart Huffy smoking a pack a day with a giant backpack pedaling down some obscure interstate between New York and Pennsylvania. Without a map, and just a general sense of "Well Philly is west, and south." Haha. Best time of my life.
Anyway, I really love the community and I want to give this a serious shot. I hear San Antonio is nice this time of year...
See you guys in the forums and hopefully someday on the road!
I'm looking at getting an REI Randonee. I know it's not the fanciest bike, but from what I gather it's a solid bike for a starter. I also live 2 blocks from an REI retailer and I hear they have great servicing. I'll save my specific questions for a different forum. Thanks for having me =D!