Finally took my bike to the repair shop to have its gears sorted out. They told me it needed a new block and a new chain. As always, I never trust anybody and feel that they're ripping me off, it's a condition of modern life, that constant feeling of being ripped off, as we live in a society where everything has a price and people, generally, are greedy. So, when I arrive at the bike shop and I'm told it's a new chain and a new block that is required I don't believe the guy. But what to do? Walk out of the shop and find another bike shop to get another quote? They'll likely rip me off too. So, having left it there I spent the remainder of my journey to Croydon trying to convince myself that it did need a new chain and block. I mean it's a good eight years old so perhaps it's time I replaced the chain and block. "That's why it's slipping," said the guy in the shop, I recalled as I walked in the drizzle towards the shopping mall, but I can't help but hear his boss, on training day, saying, "Right, if anybody comes in with faulty gears, try and tell them they need a new chain and block. They probably won't need either, but it means money for the store and profits for the bosses."
So no bike means no cycling, which means lying in bed. I never lie in for long anyway, but I switched off the alarm and didn't get up until past 9 o'clock on Saturday. Today, Sunday, I was a little earlier, but it was really nice not having to get up and go. While I feel a little restless when I don't go cycling, that's because the bike is out there in the garage, waiting. But when it's in the 'bike hospital' there's a perfect excuse.
Equally, as I sit here now, there's heavy rain hammering on the roof of the conservatory, which means I probably wouldn't have gone out anyway. I sent Andy an 'abort' text. "No bike until next week. Enjoy your ride, though." The 'enjoy your ride' bit is a joke, but I was surprised to receive a text back from Andy, "I didn't enjoy all of it. The heavy rain at the end wasn't good." Andy definitely gets a 'respect is due' for being out in the rain, but I won't hide my smugness as I read his text in the warmth of my house and sheltered from the rain.