A month ago I bought a cheap used mountain bike. I’ve already cycled two times (to be more precise, three times, including the time I tested it after the purchase). Why did I buy a cheap bicycle? The thing is that I wasn’t sure if I really enjoy cycling. It turned out that I enjoy it.

By the by, this bicycle is my second bicycle. My first bicycle experienced me making a handlebar flip from a hill. This desperate occasion meant the end for my steel friend. Dented wheels was the most harmless issue. I tried to fix it myself, but made it even worse. I haven’t had proper skills and most importantly, the internet.

The goal

Having had my second bicycle I defined a strict goal: I want to learn how to cycle on normal roads, not on pavements. Firstly, according to the rules you are not allowed to cycle on pavements. Secondly, it much faster to cycle on roads.


Thursday was a perfect day for cycling. The weather was pleasant: +10°C. The sky was clear and the wind was mild. The route was from my house to township Vysoky. Why? Because I wanted to watch a football game between Metalist and ETM. Vysoky is the place where situates the Metalist’s training camp.

On Tuesday, in two days before the game, I was cycling within Kharkiv, not far from my district. Back then I noticed that my bicycle chain was making weird noises, so I had to oil it. I had never done that before, so the internet came in handy. I spent the first half of Wednesday on finding and buying oil, and oiling the chain. The rest of the day I was fixing bicycle’s transmission, because I wanted to make it more reliable. Obviously, I’ve never done that before either. To tell the truth I couldn’t fix it on Wednesday, so I had to do it on Thursday’s morning. Thank goodness that the beginning of the match was 16:00. Hence, I needed to go at 14:00.

So, on Thursday, I managed to somehow fix it. So, I double checked the chain and whatnot and I was almost ready to go, but… I realised that the transmission was still unreliable. Bloody buggering hell! I had my third go at fixing it and finally did it. The time was 15:00. No problem, I still could watch the second half of the match.


I started cycling about 15:10. The distance to Vysoky was 25km. So I needed to cycle 50 kilometers in total.

Obviously, I decided to use pavements, because neither me nor my bicycle is not prepared for the road. Why? Firstly, I didn’t know traffic code good enough (I didn’t even have a driver’s licence). Secondly, I didn’t have retroreflectors and lights. I did have a helmet, but I decided not to use it, because I was going to use pavements anyway and it’s safe there. I’m not an aggressive cyclist, too.

While I was cycling I noticed that cyclists in my city generally attract people. I unintentionally contacted with random people while I was cycling. Well, enough of these heart touching details. What about football? Well, I have to be honest with you. I haven’t reached Vysoky and I haven’t really watched the match. I cycled about 22 kilometers and then realised that it was going to rain soon. So I figured that I don’t want to be wet and dirty (screw football) and cycled back. Unfortunatley, it did rain. And I was wet and dirty. It also became cold and I was in shorts.

This is how far I managed to cycle.

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Cycling back was tough. I was pretty tired. I already had my second wind and I started experiencing my third wind. Suddenly, bad transmission reminded me of itself. Gear switching wasn’t working properly and it was really hard to cycle uphill. Because of that I had to dismount. Anyway, since I wrote this sentence, I’m alive and I managed to cycle home.


We have a lot of cyclists suiciders on our roads. Cycling when it’s dark without any lights is a suicide. I also realised that cycling on pavements sucks because of enormously high edgings that we have in Ukraine (and we also have no ramps). The quality of asphalt on pavements is also terrible. However, in general, I enjoyed this little trip.

By the way, Metalist won the game. Metalist 6:0 ETM.

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