Saturday, April 2, 2016

In Which a Change is Made in Biking Wardrobe

First ride in the new jacket--a quick run to HyVee Drug Store.

The Canon jacket, my biking jacket that I have owned for a decade, is no more.

I go the jacket in 2006 when I purchased a new lens at a local camera store. I don’t recall the details, but there was some problem, some misunderstanding over the price. The store was being nice to me, and offered the jacket as a “sorry for the hassle” gift.

I rode a bike now and then 10 years ago, but wasn’t really a regular bicycle commuter. It was a couple of years after I got the jacket that my wife bought Francis for me, and that, plus an invitation from my oldest son to ride RAGBRAI, turned me into CR Biker.

Well, nothing lasts forever. The Canon jacket was convenient—water resistant enough and wind resistant enough to be wearable in many types of weather, and usable, with layers, in the coldest winter days. I liked that it also had a thin hood that fit under a bike helmet.

This March, my wife and I flew to England on a wonderful trip to see our daughter and grandchildren. Since March in England can be cool, I packed the jacket.

Something odd happened on that flight. In the cold of the cargo hold, somewhere over Greenland or the Atlantic Ocean, the zipper on that Canon jacket somehow lost its grip. All during that week walking around Cromer and Norwich and London, in sometimes cold winds and rain, the coat was a problem. Every day, I would try to zip it up, and each day the zipper would fail and the coat would fall open.

We tried soaping the zipper and we tried washing it to see if something that we couldn’t see got stuck in it. But nothing worked. When a zipper fails that’s curtains for the garment.

And I got some beer at the store--a toast to jackets old and new.
Well, so long Canon jacket. We went out today and bought me a new biking jacket—very similar in style, even if it doesn’t bear the name of a camera brand.

It’s black and water resistant and even has a hood, too. CR Biker hopes this new biking jacket lasts 10 years, too.

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