In a world increasingly preoccupied with throwaway materialistic things; where people are constantly busy earning money to pay for those things, or so their children can have those things;
This is the story of my dreams of travelling the world by bicycle. Because it's there. And because I dont want to die without experiencing the truly important things in life .

A sense of wonder and a sense of adventure.

Tuesday, 13 November 2012

"I have a Free Period Sir".

 I was out on my bike today cycling to the garden centre with my trailer on to pick up a bag of compost.T'was a  beautiful day as I zoomed over the newly re-designed cycleway bridge (you can actually cycle over it now! And it only took the engineers two attempts to get it right!!) Not a soul was about either on the cycleway or around the properties that border the track. It is a Tuesday so I presumed that everyone was busy at work. The busy bees working long hours so they can keep their children fed and the car topped up. Not to mention making the payments on the big screen TV and not so portable BBQ.

With Adi Doing the first Leg I Get to Sleep In.

Anyway I digress. I had a funny feeling of being naughty some how. As if I should be at work as well. A feeling you get as a school kid when you take a sicky and then go into town to buy a new bike frame that you just cant stop thinking about.I felt today like the work police might stop me on the track and say "Hey you there, shouldn't you be at work?" I couldn't say that I had a note from my mother to be out, so I thought I'd just tell them either work was closed today or that I had a free period.

Thinking about it later on I thought I could use the excuse kids use in this country, that "it's a teachers only day today sir". ( They of course don't put the 'sir' in. That's for my fathers generation. My generation would simply reply shaking in their bike shoes. Today's generation would simple add ,"what's it to you anyway?!")
  In my case I'd suggest that it's an employers only day at work. Both situations equally as productive and great excuses to get up to no good on your bike.

So what has 'Niel the Wheel' been up to in the last month since coming home from Vietnam without Adi's bike?

Well, talking of employment and feeling guilty for being out, 'Niel the Wheel' has quit his job at the bike shop!!!
Yes I have. And it was a difficult decision because the flexibility that that job offered, allowing me to take off to far away places on my bike, I thought would be impossible to find elsewhere. The bike shop while I was away was facing challenges of its own and was having to head in new directions due to the state of the economic climate. And although these changes didn't directly effect me I felt the need to make my own changes. It just wasn't the same when I went back after cycling in  Asia.

Some things were the same. But there was a lot that wasn't.

So with thoughts of maybe buying a rental property and doing it up, I handed in my resignation. I grabbed my M.U.M, pedalled out the door, cycled South along the cycleway and under the QE 2 bridge. (Submerged during high tides when cyclists need to don scuba tanks or hold their breath for approximately 2 minutes.) I shot like a missile along Queen Street Richmond and instead of going home and closing the door on my cycle retail career I instead cycled straight through the doors of the cycling opposition (Avanti Plus Richmond). Finding a hook out the back I hung my bike  on it, threw on a staff shirt, and went about confusing customers who had recently seen me dusting bikes just up  the road in Nelson.

I was no better than a bike shop whore.

My new hours are great. I'm the weekend man. The staff and owners are great. And although dusting bikes is quite therapeutic I'd rather be selling them. My only trepidation is that I think the customers are setting me up for a fall, as on my first weekend I sold 5 bikes! Steady on chaps. I'd rather start out slowly and build up to that.

With Adi Up the Road Cycling I Suppose There's No Hurry.

Having secured weekend work, I took off with Adi on a four day cycle / Vespa assist bike ride down the East Coast of the Sth Island. The weather and scenery were great. Sharing the Vespa riding and cycling we managed over 200km days without problem. Two cycles, two people and a hard working 200cc Vespa. What fun!

O You Poor Thing You Must Be Buggered. Do You Want Me to do Some Cycling Now?

Back at home I'm busy rebuilding a GT Zaskar touring bike for Adi. Sneaking the odd bit of Italian bling in for me when I do the ordering is not easy though.

Got to go now because I have just seen some (new) retro Italian rims on the local online auction site that would look just great on 'Adi's'  the bike. But first I have to work out how to bid on such things.

Next blog I'll try to convince myself and anyone else interested on the merits of a Sunday twilight ride. Well it would be a 100km Sunday afternoon ride in the summer. A 100km twilight ride in Autumn and would morph into a 100km darkish ride in the winter as we would not leave until 3pm in the afternoon. Wouldn't that be something different? I've already started without you. It wasn't too bad. I might need some friends though as we move past the longest day. Some hard men that will not be phased by riding the back country as darkness beckons. Iron men who dont mind leaving Sunday dinner warming over a pot of hot water on the oven.(Or we could stop for greasies?)

There's nothing else to be missed on a Sunday evening. You need a mortgage to afford the once popular Sunday roast. So why not work up an appetite for the bangers and mash?

Thursday, 8 November 2012

Did Ya Miss Me?

Sorry I haven't made a post recently.

But I've been out cycling.

A spring day on the east coast of the South Island, NZ. If it wasn't for the stink of seal shit you'd think you were in heaven.

Things have been happening, and I'll continue 'Niel the Wheels' story in a few days. For now I thought I'd just let you know that I haven't hung up my wheels for good and joined the chubby bum brigade, as they go about their daily chores of carting themselves and kids around in the SUV.

For now I have to check out Adi's latest parcel that's just arrived full of bike bits intended to rebuild her  touring bike. I'm pretty sure I managed to sneak  a Campagnolo rear derailleur for myself in that order.

"O' there you are you little beauty"