Oh I am so happy!!!  I mean I am thrilled!  Why you ask?  I get my bicycle back.  Yippeee!!!

Let me explain.  I did not give up my bicycle voluntarily.  It was not stolen; through it felt like I was being robbed.  It was taken during a terrible conversation with my orthopedic surgeon.   Let me explain.

After my hip replacement the surgeon was very concerned about falls.  Specifically he was concerned about me falling while riding my bicycle. So he ordered Blue Belle my wonderful bicycle taken away from me.  Blue Belle and I had a short meaningful history, I rode her for three summers and logged 1,123 miles before the hip replacement.  I loved riding Blue Belle.

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Blue Belle

Blue Belle was a classic 2007 Giant Suede unisex bicycle.  She (yes my bicycles are all female names) sported two black saddle bags a wonderful odometer and cell phone holder where I could play the songs of the 60’s, 70’s and a few 80’s that I love so much.  I loved to blast the former hits as I rode around the neighborhood, not just for me but for the entire neighborhood to enjoy.  I often thought of Blue Belle as Rick’s music wagon.  Blaring tunes like Radar Love, Ohio, Sittin on the Dock of the Bay, Jackson, and about 1,100 more.  Oh I am sure everyone enjoyed my music, well or not.  I loved riding Blue Belle.

Then in a blink of an eye, it was all over.  I had my hip replacement in January 2012 and wham I had to give up Blue Belle.  With losing her, I also lost my hope for the coming summer.  So I loaded Blue Belle up in the car and took her to the used bike shop where she was sold to what I hope is a good home.  I miss Blue Belle.

In Blue Belle’s place I purchased a three wheel lumber wagon; Silver Streak or ‘S-Square’.  I enjoy S-Square at least as far as it goes.  S-Squared is a beast.  Yes she has the music mount and a giant basket on the back.  She sports three all-purpose gears and a nice comfortable seat.  She is ideal for someone who might fall on a bicycle.  I like S-Squared, but I often receive little comments, like oh that is a nice tricycle, I wish my mother had one of those, or that would be ideal for carrying groceries. Each time I received one of those comments I cringed a little more.  I wanted to shout, I used to ride Blue Belle and she was the Hot Rod Cadillac of the adult bicycle world, not this crazy lumber wagon.

On my first day riding S-Squared two teenagers drove by and yelled get out of the way old man (A meaningless insult to them) yet I wanted to climb under a rock and hide.  Perhaps, worst of all, I knew I was owed that insult.  As a young man I had thought the same; then I was always in a hurry and wanted those who could not move so well to get out of my way.  Maybe that was the problem, maybe S-Squared made me feel like that old man I foolishly derided in my youth.  I reasoned that I got my comeuppance, I deserved it.  I wanted to yell across time to young Rick, stop that nonsense, stop being mean, stop because someday you will know the truth.  Someday you will be forced to ride S Squared.

I have ridden S-Squared for two seasons now.  Yet I have barely ridden 200 miles.  I am just not thrilled with peddling her around.  Mostly the fun of peddling around has been replaced with a job to get some physical activity.  It has been a sad state of affairs.

Then two weeks ago I kept my annual appointment for an x-ray and checkup of my new hip with the orthopedic surgeon.  I almost canceled it.  I feel good and while my butt hurts a little, I am sure he will once again say things are fine.  So just for fun I could ask for the third year in a row if I could ride a bicycle.  I expected I knew the answer, but heck a man could hope I thought.   So I asked.

Wow, what did he say?  I think he might have said yes.  Let me ask a different way I need to understand exactly what he is saying.  This time it was an unmistakable yes.  He said yes!!  I looked at my wife and nearly gasped.  I can get a two wheeler!

I knew I had to plan a strategy.  What sort of bicycle, might I get?  Where could I get it, should I wait for spring? Look in used shops?  Ask friends for places to buy a bicycle? I had a million options and about four months before I get to the opening of bicycle riding season in Indiana.

Sure enough less than two weeks later I have procured a used bicycle and as I write this I have her at the bike shop being readied for spring.  Now I need a name for my new bike.  This time I need a special name.  I am thinking ‘Redemption, ‘Second Chance’ maybe ‘Joy’?  I am feeling those emotions even as I write this blog.  At any rate I am open to name suggestions.  Yeah I love bicycles and February is the perfect month in Indiana to get ready to ride.  Maybe I should get streamers for the handlebars?  After all a cool bike deserves cool bling?  Or maybe the fact she only has two wheels is bling enough?