Last week this time was carnaval in the Netherlands. More specifically, most of it happened in the South-East of the country. This means the roads are riddled with broken bottles of mini Flügel, beer glasses and other questionable glass sources.
I rode to the doctor’s office last Tuesday on my bike and as I arrived, my tire was hissing and deflated quickly. Great! They took 4 vials of blood from my arm and I got to walk home with a bad knee and back. Naturally I overcompensated as I walked, and I ended up limping home for an hour over a 3km stretch. That was fun. (Not.)
My dad helped me patch it up that day. I hadn’t done this… ever, despite riding a bicycle since I was 5 years old. I just never got many flats and when I did, my dad would fix it for me or have me take it to a bike shop. But I learned fast, we thought it’d been patched up and the piece of glass had fallen out at some point because my dad didn’t feel anything inside the tire.
But it hadn’t.
Next day I got ready to ride to Germany and I hadn’t even left the street before my tire deflated again. I was super pissed. We missed the piece of glass, my body hurt everywhere and I had to walk to a different, closer store because I couldn’t walk another 3km like that. I waited until tonight to fix it up again because I felt miserable, but I did it. I found the little jackass.
Can you see the glass? I found it because I inflated the tube and listened for the hissing sound. I pried the fucker out of there and got to work on taking out the tube and patching it up.
Now that my dad had showed me how to do it, this was a breeze. Sanded the tire, applied the glue and waited for it to dry here, then slapped a special patch on top of the hole. Stuffed the tube back into the tire and pumped the shit out of it. It was dark and raining outside so I decided to just hop on and roll through the basement with all my weight on the bike. No hissing or deflation, so I’m hopeful that was the only piece of glass. The tire didn’t deflate after patching and pumping so I’m hopeful I’m good to go now.
This little sucker gave me all this heartache. Good grief!
I’m going to take the bike for a test ride to the supermarket tomorrow. Hopefully it’ll stay inflated, otherwise I’m walking 6km to and back from the doctor’s office for my quarterly checkup, and I’m not looking forward to the consequences of that activity. There’s a reason why I bike everywhere.
If it pops again I’m just going to take it to the bike shop and have them fix it. Obviously I’ve been doing something wrong and just need a new tube and maybe a replacement tire. Wish me luck tomorrow!