When first moving to Perth from South Africa, I hadn’t done any cycling since I was a kid. I thought that as you grew older, you were supposed to stop cycling and start riding motorbikes (which I did) and then progress to driving a car (which I did as well).
My parents bought my brother a bicycle for his 11th birthday which he rode to school. I don’t exactly remember why or how it happened, but we all decided we wanted to start riding bicycles as well, so off to Kmart we went and bought some cheap bikes.
We would go on family rides some weekends or evenings just down to the shops and back and I felt like I was really starting to enjoy it. In the first month of having a bicycle, I’d already bent the rear rim because I wasn’t getting enough stimulation from the slow ride, so I would find things to ramp off of and try jump over everything I could. This is when I knew I should probably look at buying a better bike.
I don’t remember the model of the bike, but it was a black and white Scott mountain bike that I bought which didn’t last very long either because unfortunately it got stolen while locked up at a train station. My parents realised that I enjoyed cycling and bought me a Trek x-calibre 7 for my birthday.
When moving to Sydney, I sold my car and took my bicycle with me. This is when I began using my bicycle to get around everywhere. The great thing about trains is that you’re allowed to take your bicycle with you. I didn’t see a need to buy another car because I could get around perfectly fine with just a bicycle, I also never got stuck in the dreaded Sydney traffic.
Unfortunately, again, my bicycle got stolen. This time while locked up in the garage of the apartment we were staying in. At that time, I was doing bicycle deliveries for Deliveroo as well as UberEATS which means that because I didn’t have a bicycle I couldn’t earn any money. Once again, for my birthday, my parents bought me another bike – this time my first road bike – a Reid Vantage Endurance – which I didn’t dare to lock up in the garage, I carried it up the 6 flights of stairs because I was adamant that this bike wasn’t going to get stolen.
Some of my best rides were done on this bike. I did the Sydney to Wollongong ride twice, once by myself and once part of the event. At that time it was the longest bike ride I’d ever done which was around 80km.
Since then, I’ve fallen even more in love with cycling and have upgraded to a Giant TCR. I think of distances in terms of cycling time now. I commute to work on my bicycle, I use it for entertainment and wherever I need to go I cycle there.
Recently, I embarked on a rather adventurous trip where I cycled 2,600km from Gold Coast to Cairns. It was one of the best experiences of my life. Upon returning home, I found that I was already thinking about my next cycling adventure! If you would like to read about it, you can find the posts here.