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bikes - almost, but not quite, entirely unlike tea
if I had to explain, you wouldn't understand
New job has started a Cycle to Work scheme[1], so I duly applied.

EB and I went to choose a bike on Sunday. Unfortunately the scheme only allows you to get a bike from Halfords, but I'd heard good things about the Boardman[2] range of hybrid bikes so thought I'd check them out.

I really liked the Boardman Hybrid Comp, but wasn't taken with the colour of the 2011 range (white), much preferring the 2010 style (charcoal grey, with added bar ends). Mooched around, decided how much I wanted to spend and put in my application, which got signed off today.

Much to my surprise, the Halfords website showed that not only could you still get the 2010 model, but they were £100 off for the next model up from the one I'd seen (Boardman Hybrid Team rather than Hybrid Comp) *and* in stock! I promptly reserved one and dashed over there after work[3]

Ah. It's not built yet, the web order said you wanted it supplied boxed.

Err, no. Can you build it?[4]

Sure, be ready tomorrow morning.


The Beans and I mooch off to price up some extras - lock, lights etc. I spot a bargain rear pannier rack and ask if it'd fit.

Sure, the guy replies. We get chatting and he mentions something about the 2011 range. Ah, I reply, but I've ordered the 2010 one! Bargain! £100 off!

He looks perplexed. He checks the order.

Ah. Not sure how you've managed to order that, cos we haven't got one.

He goes to check. Nope, not only is your bike not built, it's not boxed, or, in fact, there. Or anywhere.

Cue much faffing - turns out there's a weird glitch in the system which means that randomly the old models of certain Boardman bikes turn up as in stock on the website, but don't actually exist in this reality.

Short version: I got the 2011 model, Hybrid Comp. It's a lovely bike, nice & sturdy, with slick tyres and disc brakes.

And tomorrow, fully built with rear pannier, front & rear lights, cycling computer and extremely sturdy lock.

Now I just have to pay £40 a month for it for a year and it's MINE. Woooooooooooooooooo


[1] they lend you an amount from £100 to £1,000 for a bike and you pay it back in 12 instalments over a year. However, they take the repayment back out of your gross salary so you don't pay tax or NI on it, saving you a bundle
[2] Chris Boardman, ace cyclist
[3] funny story about that, but I bet no-one is actually reading this. If you are, leave a comment
[5] insert mandatory Bob the Builder joke here
14 thoughts or leave a thought
isihac From: isihac Date: June 7th, 2011 09:57 pm (UTC) (linky)
Yes I am, and your footnote numbers are borked ;-)
dakegra From: dakegra Date: June 7th, 2011 10:15 pm (UTC) (linky)
just checking to see if anyone was actually paying attention.


alibee From: alibee Date: June 7th, 2011 10:29 pm (UTC) (linky)
This was my comment. :D
smileyfish From: smileyfish Date: June 7th, 2011 10:19 pm (UTC) (linky)
Hey, I'm reading. Hooray for bike!
dakegra From: dakegra Date: June 8th, 2011 08:45 pm (UTC) (linky)
hooray indeed!
myfirstkitchen From: myfirstkitchen Date: June 7th, 2011 10:31 pm (UTC) (linky)
I am reading even though I don't like bikes. BONUS POINTS.
dakegra From: dakegra Date: June 8th, 2011 08:47 pm (UTC) (linky)
oooh, hardcore.

You're in it for the footnotes, aren't you?
alicephilippa From: alicephilippa Date: June 8th, 2011 12:25 am (UTC) (linky)
I developed a habit¹ of reading feetnote. Seems weird that they have a glitch in their system that randomly turns up last years models.

¹Blame alt.fan.pratchett. Or is that for the bread?
miss_t_ide From: miss_t_ide Date: June 8th, 2011 06:34 am (UTC) (linky)
[3] So what's the funny story about dashing over to Halfords after work?
nalsa From: nalsa Date: June 8th, 2011 10:29 am (UTC) (linky)
Story, Dave. Come on, cough up the goods.
paula_abroad From: paula_abroad Date: June 8th, 2011 11:55 am (UTC) (linky)
i want a cycle to work scheme i cycle to work alllll the time. *sulk*
jugglebug From: jugglebug Date: June 8th, 2011 06:36 pm (UTC) (linky)
Consider you footnotes read.
When I worked for the PCT I was offered a cycle to work scheme..
However I figured that no one wants to be treated by a stinky sweaty dentist and after pedalling that far I most certainly would be
tiggsybabes From: tiggsybabes Date: June 8th, 2011 09:08 pm (UTC) (linky)
tiggsybabes From: tiggsybabes Date: June 8th, 2011 09:09 pm (UTC) (linky)
Also, fab as I used to cycle a lot on my mountain bike & would like one now, but we realistically have nowhere safe to keep a bike :(
14 thoughts or leave a thought