Helping hand

Resident praises fellow cyclist for lending support while out for a ride

I was about halfway through my mid-day ride.

I was churning up Black Rock Road (just on the eastern slope of Black Rock on the BX side), when I thought I’d stop for a breather and some water.

I ride a recumbent trike (Terra Trike) and it is simply a matter of braking, holding and sitting there.  Getting started on such an incline is easily done from first gear, but things got temperamental, and though I couldn’t see it at the time, my rear changer had gone over too far, caught a spoke, bent itself out of alignment and a shear pin holding the changers spring in tension had come off.  Everything locked up.  I thought I was hooped.

All I could see was a chain that wouldn’t budge and the beads of sweat that were falling from my forehead on to my glasses.

I was totally focused on my problem.

Then it seems like out of nowhere this fellow, obviously someone who also bikes for exercise, is right there. He asked me if I had a problem. “Do I need a hand?” Four hands are better than two.

I fish through my handy-dandy bike kit to retrieve my multi-tool, and he finds the problem. And after several attempts, gets the shear pin to hold the changer spring back where it should be and voila. I’m mobile again, though I can only use 1st gear and my front drive sprockets.

We ride together up the hill, talking all the way. We share a mutual friend and fellow trike rider. We rode past the reservoir, talking up a storm. He mentioned that he was on his way over to 48th Avenue. I had to coast over on to 12th Street, shouting “Thanks a lot.” Before I thought to get his name and really thank him, he was off to his final destination.

If he reads this, I’m sure he’ll recognize himself, and I want to really thank you for being one of the good guys.

John Raikes