My Big Orange Bike; the Raleigh Retroglide

If you have been following my blog for awhile now you will know that last summer I suffered a strange shoulder injury that basically debilitated me. I was unable to do much of anything; possibly the worst part was that I could not ride my bicycle nor my motorcycle.

I could no longer bear any weight on my arms or shoulders. No more riding my beloved Kona mountain bike. No more riding my motorcycle.

I love riding a bicycle. I love the feeling of rolling along with the wind whistling by me.

Raleigh Retroglide

Seeing as I am still unable to bear any weight on my shoulders, I decided to get a different style of bike than my mountain bike; a bike that I can sit upright on and not have to ride while putting weight on my shoulders.

I bought a cruiser!! I call it my Raleigh Retroglide my Big Orange Cruiser.

Buying a new bike is an interesting experience these days. Of course before I bought a new bike I went online and did a bunch of research. I researched bicycle manufacturers, bicycle shops, and styles of bikes.

The bike manufacturer I settle on was Raleigh. And the style of bike I settled on was Raleigh’s Retroglide 7.

Next, decide which shop to purchase from. I did the thing where you can find a shop from the Raleigh webpage and narrowed it down to a couple shops – North Van, Langley, and East Vancouver.

Raleigh Retroglide

Once I had narrowed my search to three shops I looked at the shops’ Facebook pages. Any shop that allows customers to post comments and reviews on their Facebook page is doing something right in my opinion. And the comments on the Bikes For All FB page were overwhelmingly positive, nay, they were gushing with praise for the shop’s approach to business!

Off I went on a Sunday afternoon to visit Bikes for All on East 7th Ave in Vancouver.

Raleigh Retroglide

When I got to the shop I talked to sales people and discussed my situation. They listened to me and then made suggestions of a couple of other bike styles. They really made sure I was fully aware of what I was talking about!

The fact is, a Cruiser, a bike like the Raleigh Retroglide is a very unique ride. It is nothing like a mountain bike. And the staff at Bikes For All know their bikes and they know that a not everybody is going to like the ride of a Cruiser.

They pulled out a Hybrid bike and let me ride it around the neighbourhood. They pulled out a less-extreme cruiser style bike and let me ride it around the neighbourhood. They pulled out the Raleigh Retroglide 7 and let me ride it around the neighbourhood.

And you know, I liked the feeling of the hybrid. I liked the feeling of the other cruiser style bike. But I LOVED the feeling of the Raleigh Retroglide 7!!

Raleigh Retroglide

So I bought the Raleigh Retroglide 7 – my Big Orange Cruiser!!

And for the record, I have written this blog post with absolutely no compensation of any kind from Bikes For All.






The Joys of Online Shopping

As I have written about before, our household has embraced online shopping. When the kidlets need new swim suits, it is off to Amazon dot com. Once we bought a half wheel of parmigiano regianno from Amazon – yes, the Canada Post dude carried 20 lbs of parmesan cheese up the walk to our front door.

Costco is another retailer who has a fabulous online shopping experience. What have I bought from online shopping at Costco? Well, a thousand live ladybugs is one thing. And a massive bucket of laundry soap – why would I carry a 50 pound bucket of soap home when Costco will deliver it for free?

I have also previously confessed my passion for online shopping for handcrafted leather and waxed canvas bags and briefcases.

You can’t really go wrong with buying leather bags and briefcases online, especially if you are buying top quality gear such as Marlondo Leather, Bexar Goods, or Koch Leathers. That is in part because they have such great webpages or Facebook pages to communicate with you about their products, but also because there is a significant secondary market for leather briefcases. Who knew, right?


Another item that is great for online shopping is modern furniture. You can quickly and easily look at what brands and what styles of furniture the retailer has before going into the store and doing the real-life test of the furniture.

Once in store you can lounge on the couches and sit on the chairs. You can even lay down on the beds in store and fall asleep! You can’t do that when you are shopping online.

However, the fact is, not everything is well suited for online shopping. I spend more time returning shoes to the post office than my wife actually spends wearing shoes she purchases online.

If I ask why she doesn’t just buy “the right size” the first time I get that withering look. Apparently there is a unique language dedicated to shoe manufacturers – some fit “according to size” while others “fit large”. And others? Yes, some “fit small”.

The bottom line, we will continue to shop online for all sorts of things including leather bags, swim suits, and ladybugs. And yes, much to my chagrin, my wife will continue her online shopping for shoes.