Life Journal

End of Year Exams/Bike tyre battle

End of Year Exams/Bike tyre battle

04 June 2014

End of Year Exams

So, you have your early Maths GCSEs on Monday 9th and Friday 13th of June. You were on holiday last week and some revision got done but, I don’t know, if you had done more I think you’d get an A*. As it is right now you are more likely to get a high B. Which is good, don’t get me wrong, but you are capable of getting an A*.

Yesterday evening you showed me this:
IMAG0645 (1)
It really is SUPERB! You really are very smart, some of the things you have said lately made me realize just how clever you are. Mostly they came out when we are arguing, but still. If anything good has come out of our bickerings is that you are as good as arguing as I am. Actually, you are now surpassing me. Your arguments are well thought out and logical. Beautiful. You could be a philosopher or a lawyer 🙂 I’m so proud of you!

I also bought you a new push bike, one you picked yourself, it was on sale, but it still cost more than mine! It’s in the shed for now, until you finish your exams, and it’s part of your 16th birthday present.

Last year some cowardly idiot took Jeff’s bike from you, as I’m sure you remember. He came up to you, put his hands down his pants (as though he had a knife) and demanded the bike. You were smart and handed it over. You are older and wiser this time around and I will try not to worry (easier said than done). Not to mention you refuse to wear a helmet. But then again I didn’t wear one until I started cycling again in my late 30s…

Still, every time you leave the house you will hear me say ‘WEAR A HELMET’ as well as the many conversations we had about not undertaking lorries/buses/vans and lane positioning. London can be great for cycling if you learn the basic rules.

I had an epic struggle with my bike, as I was on holiday last week, I decided it was time to change my Armadillo tires, which were a gift from Tom, as they were looking a bit worn, plus one of them had a nail hole for a couple of years. I ordered them online and had no problem replacing the back one. Armadillo tires are notoriously difficult to change, so I was chuffed when I managed the first one without puncturing the inner tube. I replaced the brakes too and moved on to the front.

Four inner tubes later I was tearing my hairs out and reached despair level, also my hands had no strength left in them, so I took it to Halfords. On Facebook, Boycey, who works in a bike shop, insisted that it was possible to change them without levers (they were responsible for puncturing the inner tube every time, no matter how much care I took). But even the man at Halfords couldn’t manage without a lever. Anyway, he got it done – asked me to review his work online (so even people at Halfords are under pressure of performance reviews, poor sods), and I gave him a good review. It cost £8.99 to change it, should have taken it there to begin with. Or should I?

The next day I was not happy. FLAT! Slow puncture. I couldn’t believe it. I had enough but also had another tube and I was so determined I’d do it myself this time that I did! Somehow I managed not to puncture the inner tube – I knew I could do it, as I had before. I have been on two rides since – the thing about armadillo is that once they are on it’s very unlikely you will get a puncture. Unless you ride over a nail like I did once!

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