a frame you worked on yourself (clumsily, messily, and under heavy supervision, but worked on nonetheless!) and discover that it rides like a "real" bicycle.
I am not sure what I was expecting exactly. Ricketiness? Handling so wacky that I'd veer out of control before getting half way down the block? A full-on collapse at the joints on the first pedal stroke? Something like that. But this thing I was on felt surprisingly bike-like.
Whether it's a good bike or a bad bike I do not yet know. But oddly enough, the good vs bad does not seem all that important at the moment. It's the bike part that matters. And as a bike, it is remarkably convincing.
It's a bit silly when bloggers complain about being too busy to write. But what the heck, I'll say it: I've had a crazy couple of weeks. And in the midst of that craziness I somehow decided it was time to finally make this bicycle come alive. Scurrying ensued. Forces were mobilised. Problems surfaced. Chaos and despair reared their ugly heads. And then, just as deflated resignation was about to set in, it all came together and worked at the last minute. Out of my head with joy and disbelieve, I rode this functional two-wheeled object for 40 glorious minutes - fenders, handlebar bag and all - before it was taken apart and stuffed into a travel case, to be re-assembled in Ireland. I did not even take a decent photo.
I will write a calm and lucid post about the build, the purpose, the feel of the ride, et cetera, once the bike is back on the road in its new home. For now I have just enough energy to say thank you to everyone who helped me. I am running a mild fever from the mere awareness that this bike now exists. The experience of riding it for the first time is seared into my memory.