About 2 months ago I traded into in a very used mid 90s Specialized Rockhopper w/ chromoly frame, set up with second rate suspension forks and 2 pairs of wheelsets (one w/ dirt bike tires, the other wit slicks rated to only 40 psi). I'm 29 and haven't done any riding since I was 18, and probably no REAL riding since I was 15. So far I'm really enjoying it. I've been using it as a commuter 4.5 miles each way on the days I don't have to haul heavy gear into work (only 1-2 days a week), been hauling my 3 year old around to parks and anywhere else around town on days off in a trailer, just got back from my first real "mountain" biking trip in the desert (a little over an hour of sweating and smiling) and have dreams (delusions?) of trying a couple cyclocross races this winter. I've kept myself in good physical condition, so I think the racing is doable, even if I show up in the back of the pack. So, yes, I enjoy the bike.
All I've done to it so far is add a light, new tubes, switch forks back to the original fixed chromoly forks and switched to a set of clipless peddles yesterday. Probably not brilliant to do your first decent off road riding the day after you switch to clipless, which my knee can attest to.
Anyhow, I love the bike. It does a lot of things OK. My fear is that if I try riding something else, I'll realize how inadequate my bike is, and a new bike would, financially, be quite a ways out.
Right now I'm leaning towards sticking my head in the sand about any new tech and just enjoying what I've got. Anyone here think I'm cheating myself? Should I try to look for something used? Or should I start fanatically saving every last penny I have to upgrade?