Trying something new

On the advice of my friend Suzanne, I’m tried something new today.  What did I do different? First I took my rarely used bicycle out of the shed, secured my helmet, and rode off to the local mall. Well I actually had to turn around at the corner and go back home, the back tire was deflated. Unlock gate, unlock house, route in jar of numerous keys for shed key, find key ring with numerous keys – forcing me to try one of many again to unlock shed, find tire pump, pump like mad woman so nozzle can fall off tire thingamajig numerous times, finally re-inflate tire, return pump to shed, lock shed, return keys to house, lock house, lock gate, ride off into sunset to mall.

Finally on my way, I debate riding on the sidewalk (which is illegal) vs the road. Decide on the road, only to almost get taken out by driver who obviously hates bike riders. After my near death experience I arrived at the mall. I go to the Bulk Barn to buy some steel-cut oats (one has to stay regular healthy), and dog treats. Eventually I grab a coffee and breakfast so I can sit down and write. In truth, I went to the mall for the sole intention of writing. It seems sitting at my computer lately just draws blanks.

These past three weeks have been a whirlwind of activity at our house with Suzanne visiting. I have played the tourist with her, as we toured the RGB (Royal Botanical Gardens), The Hamilton Farmer’s Market, Cootes Paradise, Lindsay Ontario, Aylmer Ontario, Port Dover Ontario, and Niagara Falls Ontario. On bad chronic pain days for me, Suzanne went out on her own walking – and boy can that woman walk, 14 kilometres one day alone! (Note: Suzanne came over quite aware, that there would be days, she would have to go it alone while I rested). Middle child graciously did fill in for me a number of times, taking Suzanne to the mall, and for a walk at Albion Falls.

The visit to Aylmer and Port Dover (where our grandmother used to live) was on the invitation of my sister, who was interested in checking out some handmade Mennonite dining room tables. Afterwards, she thought it would be nice to have lunch on the beach in Port Dover. So on a very raining Saturday, my sister drove into town to pick us up. With umbrella’s on hand (I borrowed my husband one and only, supposedly favourite umbrella, which was later turned inside out, and left broken by an extremely strong wind gust, that amazingly left me unscathed (did he ask me that – Nooo!)) Anyways, the furniture was gorgeous, though nothing was purchased, except of course slippers by me, that middle child keeps trying to steal (payback for hubby’s umbrella?)

It seemed the rain was not going to let up, nevertheless it did not put a damper on our lunch, the scene reminded my Wales-born friend of home.

Picture of the rain hitting the restaurant window.
Before you ask, I have no idea why the restaurant decided to plant palm trees on the beach.

Stymied by a tire pump

Picture of my bike
A few days ago I retrieved my bicycle (see note) from the shed with the plan that I would ride it to the store, but when I pulled the bike out, which is no easy task, I noticed that the back tire needed air. No problem I thought, I will just dig the air pump out of the shed and pump up the tire. Well apparently it is a lot more difficult than I thought. First you need to have arm strength, and well I don’t have a lot, even with the years of carrying laundry up and down stairs, kids in and out of car seats, and now a dog (Cocoa our beagle) who occasionally needs to be carried upstairs because of bad hips.

So there I am looking at the tire pump, looking at the bike tire, looking at the tire pump, okay, I really only looked at each once, I do know how to attach the hose thingy to the tire, well at least I thought I did. First I took the lid of the plug (love the technical terms) of the tire then pushed the hose part on to the plug. I was unsure whether or not the one part of the pump needed to be up or down so I phoned my husband at work and he was not sure either, telling me to try it both ways.

With the silver thing in the up position (not seen in the picture) I started pumping and it seemed to feel like air was going into the tire, then the hose popped off. Okay, no biggy, I reattached the hose to the tire and this time I put the silver thing in the down position thinking maybe it locks the hose in place. I pump and pump but now the tire seems to be losing air instead of keeping it. Try again, silver thing in up position, and I pump and pump, the hose pops off again. Reattach hose and pump, this goes on for at least fifteen minutes, until, well the tire is completely flat. I give up and go start the van.

Later the teenage boy comes home from work and embarrassed as I am, I tell him about the tire and pump. My teenage boy laughs at his mom, trying hard to figure out how a 3/4 full tire is now 100% flat. I tried to explain, but he just didn’t understand how I did it.

picture of my tire pump

Like a good son, the teenage boy goes outside, retrieves my bike, the tire pump, and fills the tire within mere minutes, but I no longer need to go to the store. Maybe tomorrow I will pull the bike out of the shed again.

Note: In the tiny shed are six bikes, my husband’s, my son’s, my daughter’s, my other daughter’s, and my two bikes. I actually don’t have two, because my husband has said my first bike, which has that crossbar is to be used for parts for his bike. I purchased a new bike simply because of the crossbar, the best way to explain how I feel about it, is if you read this post: The bed frame and weak bladder.