I haven't ridden a bike, except on vacation, for MANY years. I am an avid walker, who hikes when I can, and I take several yoga and one Pilates class a week. But, this summer (2013), I saw some neighbors on their cruisers, said I thought that looked fun, and they gave me an extra bike they had gotten at a garage sale for free! I made them cookies in return, and joked that I traded cookies for the bike.
I told myself If I enjoyed the bike and rode it regularly, I would by myself a hybrid. I did and I did! After I walk our dogs their two miles, I jump on the bike and ride another 5, exploring parts of our community that are like hidden little pockets. I look so forward to my rides every day.
I shopped online first by type of bike (hybrid) and then by style and color. A retro-styled bike in off-white with tan saddle and grips was exactly what I wanted. But I didn't want to spend a lot of money, as I'm not sure how much I will ride in the colder months. This bike met all of those criteria and more, especially after I read customer reviews which convinced me.
It is a "sweet ride" as a long distance friend commented when she saw a photo on Facebook. Plus, it is quite comfortable for someone my size at least (5'6";/115 pounds). My husband and I put it together one Friday after work, but neither of us are cyclists and we did not find it super-simple to assemble, as much of the terminology was unfamiliar. (It was even challenging to remove it from the box, as it is not a terribly light bike--though not heavy either--and I did that before he got home.) But, we managed in about an hour. However, if you are a novice like us, I HIGHLY recommend not riding your bike before taking it to a reputable bike shop for fine adjustments and a safety check, which I did the very next day and had it back 2 days later. It is also nice to develop a relationship with a bike shop. While there, I purchased a helmet, a tan basket--which they installed at no charge--and a bicycle rack for my car which they also installed at no charge.
Our town here at sea level is quite flat, so I haven't tried it on hills yet--in fact, I haven't even needed to shift gears yet (which are kind of like a dial system on the handle bar)--but, so far, I love everything about this bike. It is an excellent value and I don't anticipate ever not owning it. So I passed the garage sale bike on to another neighbor, completely content with my purchase.
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