In case you haven’t realised by now, I like bikes. I really like bikes. Most weeks I spend any spare time I can reading about bikes, watching videos about bikes, talking about bikes with friends, sharing bike things on the internet… you get the idea. So, when my other half asked if she could come out with me on the bike I couldn’t help but be excited. A few funny comments popped up on Twitter when I first mentioned it, but I knew it wasn’t the trap that some others had suggested; it was just riding bikes and she wanted to see what it was all about.
Thankfully, the medium frame of the Spcialized Camber was a decent enough fit for her and we just had to drop the seatpost all the way into the frame. Granted, it could’ve done with a slither being cut off the bottom, but we made do. The saddle was obviously not a perfect fit – it’s still the generic saddle that came on the bike and I found it cut a bit after longer rides – so I’d pre-empted that this was going to be a negative. I just didn’t mention it.
We headed out to Dalby. It seemed a logical place to go since I’ve got a discovery pass there (free parking), and I know the place pretty well. We went straight for the skills park and down the new line they’ve built there. Admittedly, this was a mistake. Whilst I find it tame, I hadn’t realised that berms were something alien to someone who’s not ridden bikes off-road before. I hadn’t realised how difficult it could be and we ended up walking back to the top discussing what didn’t go so well. Honestly, now I realise it was entirely new to her, I can’t believe how well she handled the bike on the way down, but we both agreed it was throwing her in at the deep end.
Instead of the skills park, we went for the green route to get used to the fact that the ground moves underneath your tyres. It was a really interesting learning curve for me whilst we road around and talked: discussing body position on the bike, where to place pedals for different features, and even how to pump. Don’t get me wrong, I’m no professional but I like to think I’m getting there with technique now, but it’s not something I’ve ever had to explain to someone before. Talking about riding made me think about what I was saying and how I’d handle different situations. It was also really nice to just spend some time together away from the world talking about stuff.
After a couple of detours (ending up with us cycling a little bit the wrong way – my fault!) we went back to the car for beef sarnies. Although I’m not sure she’d admit it, I could see a spark in her eyes showing how much she’d enjoyed it, and we discussed how good riding is for just ‘switching off’ from the world.
Yesterday was an incredibly special day for me. I’m not sure I’ve managed to pass on the love of bikes, but spending the day doing something I love with someone I love made for one of the best days out I’ve had on the bike.
Now, any suggestions on how I get her back out again..?