Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Schwinn Sweetheart

I got a bike.  A cruiser bike.  A PURPLE bike!

Can you tell I'm a wee bit giddy?

Remember a few weeks ago when we got free bikes to ride on the beach and around town?  Well, that sort of reignited our want for bikes!  Don't get me wrong, I am constantly annoyed by bike riders in traffic, but we wanted a casual fun activity to do together besides walking.  For now, we'll be sticking to our neighborhood and bike-specific trails. 

We had been seriously looking for bikes for the past two weeks or so.  Mike wanted a mountain bike, and I was in love with cruiser bikes.  Until I got back on a mountain bike and loved the light, quick feel.  Because of that, I took a little longer to decide because I didn't know which route I wanted to go.

Mike took to his typical researching ways and scoured Craigslist for used, high quality bikes.  He found that buying a used, originally super expensive bike is better than buying a new, cheaper bike.  He got a great deal from a now-dad who was downsizing his collection.  It even came with tools, packs, and an air pump, SCORE!  (You know how I love a good deal!)

Once he bit the bullet, the pressure was on for me.  We checked out a few stores, did a bit of online research, and couldn't quite find the perfect one.  I wanted a PRETTY bike.  I wanted hand brakes and gears.  I wanted a cute basket.  And I wanted something comfortable.  I want, I want, I want...

We eventually returned back to one store and found a bike that wasn't there originally.  A purple bike.  With hand brakes, gears, and a nice seat.  It was pretty.  Like, I wanted it.  BUT, I still couldn't decide if I was ready to commit to a cruiser instead of a mountain bike.  Especially since Mike had purchased a mountain bike.  I didn't want to be left behind in the dust! 

So we left it.  We pondered (ugh, I am my father's daughter), and eventually decided that I would get the cruiser of my dreams for now, and if we decide it isn't the best fit, we can sell it and go for a mountain bike later.  That's the beauty of buying name brand sometimes.  It will hold most of its value and we won't be making a bad investment.

ESPECIALLY since we got 15% off!!  Why?  Because I am awesome, that's why.  Since we had been at the store about a week earlier, and the bike wasn't there, we knew it had been in stock for less than a week.  And the frame had a few scratches on it.  Thrifty Nat?  Obviously, I asked for a discount.  I was offered 10%, which wasn't going to cut it for me.  15% off on a brand new purple Schwinn?  SOLD!

Taking Her Home!

We spent Saturday washing, oiling, and jazzing our bikes in the 100 degree shade of our back patio.  We waited for the sun to almost go down and then took our new babies for an inaugural cruise around the neighborhood.  It was breezy, relaxing, fun, and exciting! 

My Beauty

My tips? 
  • Be patient and have a list of things you want - a bike is a somewhat sizable investment.
  • Make sure you'll be comfortable on and with your decision. 
  • Look online to check prices - it might be cheaper to order/buy from somewhere else. 
  • Read reviews of your future bike: look for comfort as well as durability and ease of fixing issues that may arise. 
  • If you buy from the store - give it a good once-over.  Look for:  scratches, bent fenders, working brakes, etc.
  • Make sure you have tools to adjust your bike when you get home (seat, handlebars, chain). 
  • Don't forget that you will have additional investments such as helmet, lock, lights, bike rack, etc.
Note that I am not a biking enthusiast or expert!  This is simply a fun, new endeavor that we are enjoying as a couple.  Do you have a bike?  What do you love about it?

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