Rust in peace

When Mood Music
2012-03-21 22:36:00 sad Shine On You Crazy Diamond (Live) – David Gilmour

Well, old age and Edinburgh’s acne-like road surfaces have finally done for Vilior. I lifted him onto the stand tonight to do some routine maintenance and discovered that the top tube (crossbar) has snapped just behind where it’s brazed to the head tube.

I’ve had Vilior since second or third year at St Andrews, i.e. at least 25 years and so over half my life. He’s done well, he’s carried loads, he’s carried me, he’s sat out in whatever the weather could throw at him, he’s put up with me maintaining him inexpertly and infrequently, all without complaint. (How could a mere machine complain? Anything that’s been in contact with my arse has ways of communicating its condition, I assure you.)

He’s been a comfort in a very real sense – thanks to my frozen shoulder, the only time I’m conscious and not in pain is when I’m cycling or spinning (which is cycling without actually travelling). He’s been my freedom from the tedium of walking and the tyranny of timetables. We’ve sweated and sworn together – the most recent time being last weekend when we cycled from the centre of Birmingham to my parents’ house in Worcester. (30 miles in 3 hours, but carrying a fair load of clothes and IT kit.)

And now he’s gone. His front forks and head tube might be recycled into a part of a trailer for a new bike. His front pannier rack can be re-used, as can his lights, iPhone carrier, bell and other features. Maybe I can learn to love a new bike, but that won’t stop me missing Vilior and all the miles we’ve done together.

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