Saturday, December 17, 2011

Batavus Lente is Back!

There should be no other word to describe it other than utter callousness. I'm not quite sure how it happened either.

This was a well-beloved bike, my Batavus Lente, bought in 2001 back in the village bike-shop in Rolde. It cost a pretty penny even then but most of the bikes at the shop were meant to serve a lifetime. This bike was a constant companion of mine: weekday commuting, weekend shopping, excursions with the kids when Ali was a toddler and Aisya was still a baby.

It served well ... rain or shine, windy or sunny, weekdays and weekend. We were very close to signing up for the Dutch summer cross country national cycling event, but decided against it in the end after some consideration mostly the time commitment required, and the two little ones that would have to tag along.

Then we came back and settled at 582 Hilltop. The Lente was left aside, parked idle ... day-in and day-out. Present but unused. For 7 years it sat there untouched and not cared for. Bikes became almost non-existent in our family, almost foreign. They were at one time a big part of our daily lives. Then busy took over ...

With almost seven year under the bridge, Ali and Aisya are both bigger now. And they started to get interested in cycling. It started with two bike purchases (Nexus BMX) for the kids, the hybrid-roadie (Specialised Sirrus) for me to burn some fat with, later two hardtail mtbs (Specialised Myka and Scott Aspect 40) for Clare and I. There's also the folding bike for Clare's anticipated emergency dash to the grocery store for milk or bread.

The Batavus Lente has risen again, how apt. A short sojourn at the local bikeshop, and a few minor reburfishments (most of the major parts are not available in Miri) later, the Lente is now back ... aged slighty but fully functioning as it should. It will feature regularly in our family once more.

2011 will be marked by the revival of the Batavus Lente into our family and 2012 the start of our family cycling forays. Bicycles will definitely return to be a big part of our family activities again just like the Rolde days. Busy safely locked up, keys thrown away for good.


Now let's see how I'm gonna lug the 600mm onto the Lente for biking-birding excursions in the countryside.

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