Bikes - The Wheels of Freedom
Growing up in the 70’s and 80’s, our bike was how we got from point A to point B. My first bike, I’m sure was a hand-me-down, but it was one of those tall handlebars with a long banana seat. I did some Googling and it looks like it was likely a Huffy from Sears, which makes sense, as that is where my parents did a ton of shopping.
My next bike was a red Huffy Thunder Trail with an adjustable mono-shock. It was a “trail” and “off-road” bike, lol. I used to ride that thing all over the place. That was the bike I learned to ride with no hands and also the bike that I had my worst crash on.
I was trying to impress this girl, of course, and I was riding down this hill in the neighborhood with no hands and lost control, ended up flipping over the handlebars and before I knew it, I was eating pavement. But I survived with only abrasions and bruises and all without a helmet and pads that all the kids today have to wear.
Doing some Googling I was able to find my old bike, well not my exact bike, but a bike of the same make model, and color as mine. It even has the yellow pad on it, but I think it came with a pad on the crossbar (aka, the nut buster) and the hand bar cross member, plus there was a plastic number plate on it.
I loved that damn bike, but as I outgrew it, I ended up with my brother’s old 10-speed bike, with the old-school curved handlebars. That thing was more of a pain than anything else. Not because it was my brother’s old bike, but if you know anything about 80s 10-speed bikes, the gears were not all that great and the brakes were even worse. I think that I spent more time, working on it than riding it. But I put some major miles on it, riding it 2-3 miles all the time to go to friends’ houses, girlfriends’ houses, soccer practice and to go see my mom at the store she worked at and pick up some fish for my tropical tank.
It was a regular sight at some houses to see the below image. This meant that all the kids were at that house playing. It was great as it was like a billboard, of “Here is where we are all playing at” and for the parents “If you can’t find me, check here”. Great times growing up in the 70s and 80s.