After my glorious ride yesterday morning, I took my bicycle into the shop at REI. I try and support my local bike shop, but Allanti seems to be primarily a racing shop and I haven’t clicked yet with the guys there like I have at REI. I know it’s a chain, but it feels like a local shop and their hours are better and I’m a member so I get a discount on everything I buy there. It sounds like I’m confessing like a guilty Thomas, and I suppose I am, but I like the guys there, so I’m going to keep sending my business there for the time being.

Anyway, I took Juliet in for some work. I know what needs to be done, but I simply don’t have the time, nor the skills to make sure that it gets done properly. I was hoping that I could get just he basic tuneup which was around $40, but in order for them to repack my bottom bracket <insert your funny joke here> I had to get the complete overhaul package which will set me back $130 bucks. Ouch. I know it’s a wee bit expensive, but I have no choice. Juliet needs the work done and she hasn’t had a tuneup since the Europe tour back in 1990.

The previous night I had talked with Eric and it sounded like they might have it done the same day. That would be great, because it would mean that I could get in my ride this morning. Bob, the mechanic there, said that it was a 4 hour job to do an overhaul, so it wouldn’t be ready until tomorrow. 🙁 I left instructions regarding what I knew that needed work: replace the bent spoke on the rear wheel, replace the chain with a standard chain, install a plastic guard behind the freewheel. They agreed to call me if they needed to replace something.

Hoping that Bob would begin working on Juliet that day, I was anxiously waiting for a call yesterday. I feel a little bit like I did when we took Monkey in for treatment. I want the bicycle doctor to call me and let me know how Juliet is doing. I can just hear one of the bike techs on the other end of the call saying, “Juliet is just fine. We fixed up her wheels and gave her a nice bath and she’s resting peacefully.” I know it may sound pathetic to be so attached to something as silly as a bicycle, but she has been with me through thick and thin.

She was there when I began my recovery in earnest after breaking both of my knees in high school. She took me to class for 4 years at LSU and all over Baton Rouge. She helped me transport a great big bean bag chair across town so that I could give it to my girlfriend Holly as a birthday present. And last, but certainly not least, she took me on the wildest adventure of my life for 6 months in Europe. I treasure that bicycle.

Maybe they’ll call today.