Yes, I have procrastinated my posts until I am on vacation. After a very busy Winter and Spring (for work, not riding or running, obviously), I finally got time to take some time off. I thought I would catch up on my posts, but hey, it’s vacation. What’d you expect?
Seriously, time off has been good. I’ve gotten to spend time with the most important person in the world (sweetie), and got some needed things done around the house. However, there has been some stuff for me this week as well. A colleague gifted me a vintage Schwinn Series 70 mountain bike. At the time, it was Schwinn’s top-of-the-line mountain bike, and the one I had seemed in great condition. Until this week, I did not have enough time to get it out and clean it up and see if it would ride well.
Disclaimer time: I am not a mountain biker, nor do I intend to become one. However, I have some friends that ride some local trails and it would be nice to ride with them…upon occasion. I have enough trouble riding the roads and not causing injury. I can’t imagine riding paths that would be actively seeking my downfall.
Surprisingly, the Schwinn cleaned up well and didn’t really need a lot of adjustment. The frame is a little on the small side for me (17″ I think), but it’s adjustable. I would really like to have a lot of standover height on a mountain bike, IMO.
The clean up job came out real nice. I rode it for just a little bit. Long enough to realize I needed to raise the handlebars. However, that presented a problem. This Schwinn has a really good set of Shimano cantilever center-pull brakes (Yes, the purists might say the two terms are redundant, but I know some won’t understand ‘cantilever’). The cables appear to be cut to length just right and the control pulley is on the stem. There is no slack or adjustment to the cable and if I raise the stem, the brakes will lock up. So, I need to get a new front cable so I can raise the bars. Then, I can see if I will survive a trail.
Other than that, I am also trying to spend time learning Perl. Perl is a programming language used very often on Unix PC’s and servers. It’s not new, but it’s getting used a lot these days. I felt I needed to add it to my arsenal of languages I already know. I chose a good book to read, but the author takes a utilitarian approach by teaching how to re-invent the wheel on basic Unix utilities with perl. Boring after five pages. But, I need to get through these steps before getting to the good stuff later. Yes, I’m weird. So what?
Vacation will be over soon, but not before I get my first organized ride of the year in on Saturday. It’s time for the Ride for Heroes in Aledo, TX. I haven’t gotten to ride any really long distances this Spring. My running has been good, so I hope to be able to get the 100K done. We’ll see.
Then on Sunday, I get to spend five hours on traffic safety for my instructor course. My city is working on becoming a bike friendly city. It needs a certain quantity of League of American Bicyclist certified instructors as part of the criteria. The city is generously paying for several of us to earn that designation and this weekend is one of our courses. I’ve done the online portion and this is one of the next steps. I think there is another after, but I’m not certain. They’ll let me know, I’m sure.
It’s been a good week of rest. Mostly, vacation is just a good time to get your mind off of work. It can so easily take over. We know as triathletes that we have to rest in order to avoid injury. It’s also important to rest our minds and our spirits from time to time as well. It’s been a good week and there are still some good things to do before it’s back to the grind. Enjoy yourselves and don’t forget to tri hard.