Monday, September 21, 2009

Visits and Bike Rides

Today started off with a nice visit with Martin. He and his girlfriend Karen came over to Virginia for our wedding, and we've only seen them once since I moved in March. Unfortunately, he was here because his computer is messed up and Nid's going to work on it this week for him. But it was still nice to catch up a bit.

When he left, we started off on our bike ride. Our goal today was to get bread at Sainsbury's, but we were taking the long way around. That took us across the canal to the National Space Centre, which we still need to go to. They've got a pair of rockets in there, one US and one UK, side by side. We could see through the building into it. There is an elevator in there, and we saw people being taken to the top of it. Can't wait. Nid says it's like us, US and UK right here together in the UK. It's also cool, because apparently one of the Universities here in Leicester works closely with NASA, which is why the Space Centre is here I think. Across the parking lot from the Space Centre is the Abbey Pumping Station. It's, well, a pumping station. Or it was, it's now a museum.

Leaving there, we cycled through Abbey Park, stopping to take some photos of teenage swans. They were nearly full size, and there was a little bit of white feather showing, but mostly they were gray. I am lucky to have a husband that when I asked what kind of geese the gray ones were, he didn't laugh at me, he just said "they're swans" and let it go. I didn't know! But about the geese... there are Canadian Geese here. What a bain of society those birds are! I'd seen them when we went to Watermead Country Park, but every time I see them I just dislike them more. In my experience (starting from my time at Virginia Tech), they bully the ducks, they poo every where, and can be quite aggressive.

As we rode around the park, there was a gate open that is normal closed, so we went through it and across the street to Halfords. It's a big auto parts store, with a large biking section. We looked at some accessories. We aren't ready to buy anything now, but I figured if we'd seen what the biking superstore offered, when the time came, we'd know whether or not we were getting a good deal somewhere else. Because we had been able to leave the park at the place that we did, we were just a short ride from Cyclemagic, where we got our bikes. We went in and spoke to a Simon, who had me sit on my bike and discussed my issues with me. They didn't have many bikes available at the moment, but he took measurements of my bike and our information, and is going to keep an eye out for another bike with a slightly lower to the ground frame. Turns out, though, I may not need a new bike. I had him raise my handlebars, and that has made a difference for me. I think it's because I'm not leaning so far over (amazing what an inch can do) my weight balances different, making me confident on starts and stops. That was really my only problem. Riding was fine, but traffic made me very uncomfortable, with my toes barely touching the ground. If this solved my problem, I'll be really happy. We'll see how the next few days/weeks go.


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