Friday, February 10, 2012

Work And Stuff

   Suddenly I realize it's already February 9th and I haven't posted in some time.  What can I say, we've been busy.   My service has been requested at two locations of the Bike Gallery, both by friends who are the service managers at the two stores.  My commitment was to Pete at the shop I had worked at from 2001 until I moved in October 2007.  But Pete being the sweet friend that he is, suggested I try both on part time for a few weeks and decide where I want to settle in for the season.
   The first couple of days at the old shop were strange.  A blend of familiar friends and new personalities are now working there.  I did my best to remember names or fudging it as needed.  Working with Pete is really fun.  He's upbeat and positive, but can crack and get cranky, reminding the world he is human and has limits.  Those first two days there wasn't much for me to do.  I checked over a bike being purchased, tried to refamiliarize myself with the employee handbook,  and propped up a bench until I left early.  The following day I got going on an overhaul which can be a pretty big undertaking.  I worked all day on this one bike that wasn't in the worst shape.  I stopped a few times to help customers at the counter.  And then the day was over, overhaul mostly done, but not test ridden.  So I had to leave it for Ben to check out the following day.
   The following day was Friday February 3rd.  Nate met me at 5804 N. Montana and we rode through North Portland down to the Broadway Bridge and downtown to the shop.  It was my first bike ride since getting to town.  The entire store was in a state of confusion resulting from the store manager being laid off the previous day.  In her place was James, a long time BG employee and manager of another location.  We had some repairs in the board to do but otherwise it was a pretty relaxed shift.  I got into a overhaul of a 30 year old Trek road bike that took some doing.  For lunch I walked down the street to a parking lot that housed about 6 food carts all selling different foods.  I decided on Yakisoba from the Korean place.  Greasy but delicious.  By the time I had gotten back to the shop and eaten, it was an hour later.  The overhaul took the rest of the day and I had to leave it to be finished the following day.
   The following day was Saturday.  Nate and I were the only people scheduled in the shop.  And the customers were coming in.  Coming back to the Service Department for brake pads, to schedule overhauls, flat tire repairs, purchasing brake pads, and the like.  New bikes were coming at us to be checked over prior to test rides, prior to purchasing with accessories to install.  I continued to work on that overhaul from yesterday until it was dark outside.  I test rode it in a parking lot under streetlights.
   The weather was sunny with occasional rain for the first 10 days and now we have rain with occasional sun; more appropriate for the season, anyhow. 
   We have acquired our Oregon driver's licenses and continue to go forth daily in search of the missing pieces that make up this modern life we are given.

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