A day that, had it not involved a bicycle, would have had me crying...
My wife and I moved to Eugene, OR at the beginning of the year. A very large part of the draw for me was the city's healthy bike-culture. I've had a desire to live car-free for awhile, but since being married have always had one there as sort of a crutch. Well, when we moved, it ended up taking forever for our registration to transfer from Pennsylvania, so four months later our unregistered car is still sitting in the driveway doing absolutely nothing. With that said, circumstance has more or less forced us into car-freedom, at least until paperwork finishes clearing. I absolutely love it, partially because it forces me to be a bit creative in solving problems that ordinarily would be solved by calling my wife with the car. One such problem came up yesterday.
I rented a long-haul cargo bike from CAT, our local bike co-op, to haul some groceries home (which I enjoyed thoroughly and decided to design and build one of in the very near future). Upon returning the bike, I saw a used fixer-upper of a bike trailer there for 25 dollars. I bought it and tried to decide how to get it home, as the hitch arm was one of the missing parts. I ended up lashing it to my bike with an old inner tube and trying to tow it, which failed miserably as it bounced back and forth behind me while flying into the air and crashing back to the ground every six feet.
I stopped to try to come up with a more stable way of transporting it when I heard the whoosh of the sidewall of my rear tire spontaneously ripping in half. Fortunately, I had only made it about a block from CAT, so I returned to get a new (old) tire and revisit my attempt to securely attach the trailer to my bike.
As I pedaled off again, I once again heard the trailer doing somersaults behind my bike as the sky opened up and it started hailing. I stopped under an overpass and after some trial and error, ended up lashing the folded up trailer to the front rack on my bike, which I built earlier this month for just such occasions. While it didn't fit perfectly, it did the job, although I now couldn't steer properly or reach my brake. I proceeded to ride the rest of the way home in a t-shirt, in hail/cold rain--very, very slowly--grinning ear to ear the whole time.
This is a picture of my bike with the attached trailer when I got home:
It really sounds miserable but I felt so alive during the experience that I couldn't help but love it. Anyone have any similar experiences?