“So long, farewell, auf Wiedersehen, good night, I hate to go and leave this pretty sight”, Sound of Music
Well it’s over. The seconds ticked away on the eBay listing my old Condor and now it belongs to someone else. It’s a sad moment for me. As I said before we’ve shared quite a bit of history. I’ve owned that bike longer than I’ve known my wife. It’s travelled with me to seven houses (yes, I have moved house far, far too often) and spent 3 months in a storage unit. I commuted in Oxford on it, cycled round Murcia and Andalusia on it and both of my children have been transported on it.
I was thinking back to when I got the bike in ’97. That was the year Princess Diana died, Tony Blair became Prime Minister and Steve Jobs returned to run Apple. In the world of cycling things were about at their lowest ebb. The ’97 Tour was barely worth watching – concluding with a podium full of chemically enhanced cyclists (remember this was the year before the “Festina affair” when half the teams withdrew from the race). Back then a steel touring bike was about as unfashionable as a jacket with shoulder pads and rolled up sleeves. Everything had gone aluminium, mountain bikes were in the ascendancy and hybrids were just round the corner. How things change.
I was concerned about who its next owner would be. How would they treat her? I was delighted to hear that she’s being fitted out for a tour across France on “traditional British touring bikes”. Sounds perfect. Also perfect is that her new owner’s 6” plus and may be able to stand astride the cross bar without doing himself an injury.