Unless you’ve had your head in the sand or have been on the moon for the last few days, you can’t have failed to have noticed the glorious early summer weather. And whilst said glorious weather, might make us grown-ups want to drag the spider-infested BBQ out of the garage, my kids instead wanted the bikes and all the paraphernalia that goes with them (personalised bike number plate, anyone – kids today!).
So late on Bank Holiday Monday, with the scorching sun a little less scorchio, and having somehow avoided cleaning the BBQ, I promised the kids a quick bike ride around our village to end a brilliant long weekend.
Now, Edie, my eldest at 5-years-old isn’t exactly Bradley Wiggins on her bike yet, but she gives it her best shot, and can get a few yards before adding to her 200 knee grazes, but my son, Arlo, at 2-years-old is still very much in that stage where he’s carried about like some kind of lazy royal - do royals still get carried around? Probably not, but you get the point; he needs a bike seat.
We actually did have a bike seat which was used when our Bradley Wiggins wannabe was younger, but the usual wear and tear has meant the feet straps have snapped and it was just showing its age, so has been used for a while. So, in the low evening sun, with the promise of a bike ride with dad to fulfil, I set about constructing and attaching a brand-new bike seat myself. To all those Handy Andys out there, this might not seem like much of a task to you, but our last seat was fitted by the shop we bought it from, and although I like to think I’m a bit nifty with the odd Swedish flat pack, here we’re talking about the safety of my son out on the roads, so I was conscious it had to be done right.
Upon unpacking my Urban Iki from OGK bike seat, I was immediately struck by its cool design. Dutch creativity with Japanese roots, the moody dark grey tones (other colours available) and its slick and minimal design help remove any unnecessary bulk. The Urban Iki website details how their cycling accessories incorporate good design, high quality, guaranteed safety, smart technology and all at an affordable price, which on first glance, our seat matched up well to those values.
As I began to follow the instructions putting together the seat and it’s accompanying bracket, I could immediately see how simple the design was – that’s not a bad thing, certainly not, it’s definitely a good thing, because as I said, the sun was beating down on me, my children were starting to be a little irate, so time was of the essence. All in all, I spent about half an hour fitting the seat, but maybe 15 minutes of that was removing the old bracket that was still on my bike, and that’s important to note here; the screws on the Urban Iki are conveniently positioned to take on and off, whereas our old model meant way too much faffing about with an Allen key whilst the rear tyre and break cables were in the way.
With my bike good to go, we hit the warm, sticky tarmac and headed for the metropolis of the village green. As we hit top speeds of 3 mph (Edie bless her, make that 201 knee grazes), Arlo felt safe and secure, he was comfortable and loved his evening being transported around like the lazy royalty he is. A quick break to pick some daisys and fail miserably at making some chains, we headed home. The bike seat living up to expectations, the kids were happy and so I gave myself a little pat on the back for my excellent Bank Holiday dad skills - job done, or so I thought. My wife then told me we were having a BBQ for dinner. God damn it, I thought I’d got away with cleaning it…