This February, emboldened by my visit with the good folk at Natural Cycle, I determined to disassemble my trusty old bicycle and give it the sophisticated attention it so desperately needed. I took the bike into the basement, pulled out my tools and carefully laid them out the way a surgeon might. Then I retrieved my manuals and set them beside the tools.
I considered my first move.
Then I reconsidered. Why not see what it would cost to get a pro to do this? I took it to my local outfitters, and asked.
"So you want a basic overhaul?" he said.
"Well, certainly that. But there are a few other things I'll need as well." I began to enumerate, and watched as his eyes glazed over.
"Well ... I can do that," he said, once I finished my list. "I have to give you fair warning, though. Here's what it's going to cost, not including parts replacement."
He told me. It was time for my eyes to glaze over. I cleared my throat and said, "Remember that bike we talked about last spring? It's a cyclocross model."
"That's the one. What's the sticker price?"
"Actually, I've got two left over from last season that I'm trying to get rid of."
"Any chance one of those might fit me?" I asked.
"Oh, there's a pretty good chance, I'd say...."