Well it wasn’t exactly on my birthday, but close enough. Looks like my new, beginner’s commuter / touring bike’s gonna be the Specialized Crossroads. Went and bought it today. I think I was driving my LBS guy crazy. Funny it was the first bike I liked when I first saw it a couple of months ago and at the end, after seeing others, just went back to it and got it. (Took the last frame the LBS will have this year and he won’t be able to upgrade it for himself, as he planned to do.)
I was simply disappointed with the Lapierre Sub 550 – it seemed weaker to me and I really disliked the suspension, so once I got through all the bells and whistles it has as compared to the Crossroads – it just didn’t tickle my fancy. (I never got to see the Orbea so that’s something I’ll keep to myself. Might that have been the bike for me?) Frankly, I was tired of looking and waiting and thinking, though I managed to keep my patience for a few months. Not bad for me. “It’s only a beginner’s bike, for God’s sake”, I finally said yesterday. Done.
A beginner’s bike ought to be just that. Something to get pedalling on, reasonably comfortable and not overly expensive. It should provide first experiences on the road – a bit of commuting perhaps – and some easy riding with the children. Might also be able to do a little touring, if one were so inclined. Based on my research I think that the Specialized Crossroads can do just that - perhaps even more as Amahia showed riding it through China -, with the additional bonus that I won’t be afraid to tinker with it – as I did with my Purple Pig; so I can learn to change a flat, to tighten a bolt or two, to center the breaks or to even take the crank right out to see what the hell those things really look like in a horizontal position. Yes, my poor Purple Pig did all of that and had it not been for the broken crank I’d still be riding it today.
In the end, riding is what matters, isn’t it?