Three weeks ago, my front bike wheel was stolen. So lately, no Sunday morning rides with Michael to the New Amsterdam Market at the Seaport. Hopefully this week I can get my wheels up and running again, especially before winter creeps in with a mean vengeance and my beloved rusted bicycle is abandoned once again in the bitter cold.
Riding a bicycle in the city isn't as death-defying as it seems. I admit, I ride at a slug's pace, and yes, I know I look ridiculous. I actually think my 6-year-old niece rides faster than I do. To easy any jitters of cruising around the city, I think it's really important to feel solid and secure on your bike. The first rule of thumb is to buy a helmut. I got mine from Bicycle Habitat in Soho, made by Uvex. It's surprisingly comfortable, and despite the fact I look like I have a mushroom for a head, I do feel really safe in it. You can check out more options here and here.
To protect your sweet cruiser from disappearing before your very eyes, check out these bike locks. I find they're the least expensive online on Amazon. There are lots of different kinds. Originally, I went a tad overboard when I first bought my bike and purchased the indestructible (and incredibly heavy!) Kryptonite New York City chain. After years of weathering torrential downpours and the occasional blizzard, luckily my two-wheeler still rocks (ahem, minus a wheel), but I'm thinking of downgrading to a simple U-lock. Just seems like a better option (unless you have a fancy bike), less fuss and keeps the extra added weight off for balance.
And where does one buy a vintage bicycle in New York?
I bought mine from Great Used Bikes, which came highly recommended by some bicycle savvy friends. Check out their selection online, pick the one that sings to you, fill out the order form, et voila! On the following Sunday, John McFarlane, the owner, will swoop by your pad, where you'll give the bike a test run. He'll make any final last-minute adjustments, and if all's good, then you've got yourself a new set of wheels right then and there. Congrats! Now, wasn't that easy?
John is really nice guy and so helpful! On each of his bikes, he leaves a small non-descript sticker with his number on it, just in case you run into any problems.
Hmm. I wonder if that includes stolen bike wheels?