My bike was stolen last fall, it happened just before the weather turned so I didn't bother finding a new bike. I actually was given a bike by some friends, a pretty nice single speed that got me through the last two weeks of summer. This spring I fully intended on buying a new bike. Something a little larger than what I had been given, a little faster and more nimble. Then the crank fell off the bike I was using which meant I was bikeless. So to the bike shops I went.
But it turns out bike shopping just isn't working for me. I don't know why. I wander into a bike shop, look around, see a few things I sort of think look neat, but nothing catches my eye. It's been an extremely frustrating experience, and I have no one to blame but myself.
I use my bike as my main form of transport during the summer. I don't typically commute on my bike, but I do try to ride it to the light rail a few times a week. This is only about a 2 mile ride, so it's a pretty small portion of what it's used for. Bike on city streets. I'm not a leisurely biker, when I'm going somewhere I generally want to get there. My bike gets locked up downtown in the evenings, and will be ridden in the rain on occasion. It will go on 30 or 40 miles rides once in a while, though the majority of times it's probably ridden less than 5 miles at a time.
I could buy something used, I've been pursuing Craigslist on occasion, but nothing has really jumped out at me. I've also visited a few of the used bike shops in the city. I've yet to find anything that excites me there, at least nothing that is in my size.
A couple other things. I thought I wanted gears, but the more I look the more I wonder if I should even bother. My budget isn't set either, which is making things more difficult. I also have very little bike maintenance experience. And yes, I know I can take classes and that I should take classes, but I know myself, this won't happen. I'll either learn it on my own or pay someone to do it. It's how I operate. So a used bike seems like a potentially bad idea.
I've asked for advice from numerous quarters. And received a ton of recommendations. But I thought I'd turn to my blog for potential inspiration. Anyone have a recommendation of where I should shop or what I should buy. Just remember, I'm looking for inspiration here as much as ideas, so fire away. Even if the bike in question costs as much as my car.