Yesterday I sold my first hybrid bike — a Specialized Sports Sirrus — which I purchased in February 2007.
I rode her fairly solidly throughout 2007 but only intermittently in 2008, mainly because of ongoing shoulder and flank pain. But in December of that year I was diagnosed with psoriatic arthritis in my hands and for the next two years I barely rode the bike.
When I took workplace redundancy last year, one of my goals — aside from taking some time out and doing some travelling — was to get my health back and regain my fitness. In Australia last December I bought an entry-level Trek hybrid to see me through a couple of months of leisure cycling — and a new love affair was born.
Riding that new bike put things into perspective for me: the Specialized, back in London, was too small and the ride position too uncomfortable.
That was confirmed when I returned to the UK in February. I was 9kg lighter and the fittest I'd been in years. Despite the winter weather I was keen to get out and about on the bike. But no sooner had I got back on the Specialized than my shoulder stiffness returned and I could feel the pain in my left flank that had plagued me throughout 2008.
I promptly went out and bought another bike — the exact same one I'd bought in Australia (and left behind for my mother) — and there's been no looking back.
But my poor Specialized, which I so loved when I first bought her, was taking up space in our storage room and I knew I'd have to sell her on at some point. I ummed and ahhed about it, though. It would be like saying goodbye to an old friend — even if the friendship had soured a little towards the end.
I placed an advert on the intranet at the publishing company where I'm currently freelancing last week half hoping no one would see it. But within a day of it going up I had a potential buyer.
I cleaned her up over the weekend and took her for a quick spin to make sure all was in order. Then I cycled her in yesterday, parked her up and at lunch-time made the sale.
It felt weird saying goodbye to her, but when it comes down to it, we just weren't made for each other. Sometimes you've got to be honest with yourself and get rid of the things that cause you pain...