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83. Pump Up the Tires and Ride the Bike
The blue bike was sitting in Owen’s living
. It had no kickstand, so he had wedged
front tire in between two bookshelves so that
bike would stand upright. Both tires were flat.
covered the bike. However, no household spiders had
up a web site. When was the last
I rode this thing, he wondered as he
It was Sunday. Sunset was still
two hours away. The temperature had been 86
noon, but had dropped to about 76. Owen
spent Saturday and most of Sunday cleaning up
apartment. The termite inspector was coming on Monday.
wanted the inspector to be able to “inspect”
tripping over boxes, books, fishing rods, and golf
Owen was going to reward himself with a
afternoon bicycle ride. He enjoyed riding or walking
his neighborhood with its many beautiful houses, yards,
trees. But first, he had to inflate both
tires. He got out a hand air pump
had bought at a thrift shop for only
. The pump nozzle adapter didn’t fit onto the
’s valve stem. Nothing is ever simple, he thought.
looked for his new pump, the one that
cost $10. It had all the bells and
: high volume air flow on both up and
strokes, quick lock valve adapter and four nozzle
, air gauge, and footplate for easy pumping. It
a beauty. Of course, Owen couldn’t find it.
’ve got everything, but I can’t find anything, Owen
As usual, Owen did find one thing while
was looking for another thing. He found another
pump that he had been looking for a
ago. It was a big, heavy, steel pump
had an air gauge and a small leak
. Owen connected the pump to the rear tire.
started pumping. The “small” leak seemed to have
bigger. Owen stopped counting after the first 80
; finally the dial hit 65 psi. He was
and puffing. He went to the refrigerator and
a diet soda. After finishing it, he pumped
the front tire. Sweat dripped from his forehead.
was a good workout, he thought as he
off a second soda. He screwed the valve
caps back on. He stood back and admired
“new” tires proudly.
The bike was now ready
ride. Owen, however, felt a little tired. Plus,
was hungry. In fact, it looked like it
getting too dark for a long ride. There’s
tomorrow, he thought as he opened the refrigerator
. The chilled air felt good.