Lots of things going on at the moment, Part 1: Cycling.

This post is a significant one. Why? Because this is the first one I write on my shiny new laptop. More on that later.

As the title suggests, lots of things are going on in my life at the moment. Everything is in full swing: studies, ECAs, even the "other" things. Extremely busy. Much of the development, however, happened in the span of the last 4-5 days. I'll split my post into many parts, each part on a certain development.

Part 1: Cycling.

The most significant development in my opinion.

I have always wanted to get a bike. Two main reasons: good exercise; and the more important one, my pocket - my need to travel costs me quite some money. Imagine just a simple task of grocery shopping at Jurong Point takes me .77 a leg (or 1.54 a round trip). And I make such trips every other day.

Then a good soul saved the day. A good friend/ senior sold me his (largely) unused bike for $80.

First ride is always the most memorable. This first ride had the distinction of being the longest ride I had ever taken in my life up to that point.

20km. ACS Oldham Hall all the way back to NTU.

And it felt extremely good.

And after that day, I started relying on my bike for my daily commute. Around campus, out of campus for grocery shopping and even further out. For instance just two days ago, I attempted another record ride - 23km from NTU to Suntec City for COMEX 2014 scouting. Of course it's coupled with another 23km back to NTU including the last 9 clicks under the rain (which is as memorable as my first ride).

Of course, cycling comes with its own set of problems I need to solve.

First one, finding places to park. This one is more or less a non-problem once I get used to the places I most frequently cycle to - like how I took 5 minutes to find the parking lots at Boon Lay MRT the first time I cycled there but the second time, it's just "there". Problem solved.

Second one, finding bike service points. Another non-problem thanks to the Pioneer neighborhood. Got a simple chain-lock in my favorite shade of red for a good price, and hopefully I wouldn't need to frequent that place. Problem solved.

Third one, finding appropriate routes and following them. Took a bit more Googling on my side and found a pretty nice website called BBBike @ Singapore. Lets you know how to get from A to B, where to turn, helps you approximate the distance between points and turns. Excellent resource and I've been relying on that for the duration of me having my bike. I also started to give certain roads names, easy-to-remember ones like "the Axis" - referring to the ~9km-long Boon Lay Way - Commonwealth Ave West stretch (the significance being my gateway to town. Which I would love to frequent on bike). Problem solved.

Fourth one, keeping myself alive and well on the road. The "alive" part, the job of hand signals - I read the rule of law governing cycling before getting my bike, which has the specific hand signals for specific purposes (I actually read the law. Achievement unlocked indeed). The "well" part, the job of my favorite non-carbonated H2O. After 46km of round trip the other day, my legs still felt like my legs. Wonderful right? Problem solved.

Fifth one, carrying stuff with me. The single biggest challenge I've faced so far thanks to my limited carrying capacity, and the same problem that keeps me going to the MRT when I need to get lots of stuff/ heavy stuff...

...but even so, I'm still really happy with my bike and cycling.


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