This week I became the a real puncture repair veteran. Some people might even start calling me the puncture repair man.
It all began, reasonably innocently (this is a bit of a bold claim, because a puncture, is, by its very nature of being a puncture, inherently evil). It wasn’t a particularly hard puncture to fix – the usual process of pump up the tyre, hear the air escaping, mark it carefully with my wax crayon (what has happened to wax crayons?), deflating, roughening up, applying glue, sticking patch, holding, waiting, dusting off with chalk, pumping up to check it’s worked, putting it back together again.
Except my world began to become unstuck on that last point. It is such a silly, little, insignificant point. But it was when I put it back together, that I realised I couldn’t put it back together – it didn’t fit. The tyre was too small for the wheel. In situations like this, I’ve often found a bit of ‘mild’ aggression can go a long way. And it did. Before I knew it, the tyre was back on the bike and I was gleefully pumping the tire back up again. And I carried on pumping. That gleefull smile began to slide off my face. I realised in my burst of mild aggression with the tyre levers I’d had the misfortune of actually puncturing the tyre again.
So I had to take it all apart again.
If that was the end of the story, it would have been a slightly sad, but not tragic tale.
The tragedy was that an hour and a half later I was still there, desperately trying to put the tyre back on the wheel without creating any more punctures (I was on puncture number six at this point). And finally I did it, the tyre back on, the wheel pumped up.
Until the next morning when I found the tyre deflated again.
Seven punctures, one week.