|Several hours, and inches of snow, later myself and Mrs Trihard were helping push cars up this hill|
But I had a cunning plan - operation Trojan Horse. Phase one of operation Trojan Horse involved paying the lion's share of a rather bountiful payday into the joint account to help sweeten the deal in case difficult questions were asked following phase two. Phase two of Operation Trojan Horse involved taking the bike to Evans for a "routine service" but sneakily having lots of parts not only replaced, but upgraded. Voila, effectively a brand new bike without having to explain why I have a brand new bike.
Obviously one or two of my sharper readers will have spotted a slight flaw in my plan - namely that I have made this entire Machiavellian scheme public knowledge. Well, true to form I accidentally let slip to Mrs Trihard on the day that I didn't want her coming to the bike shop as she'd find out how much I'd spent.
Realising I was digging myself a hole I quickly launched a three pronged attack. First of all I subtly asked if she'd noticed that I'd paid a sizeable amount of money into the joint account. Secondly I countered that we shouldn't be getting bogged down in the finances but should focus on how much my cycling performance was going to improve, surely something that would benefit the whole family. Thirdly, and most importantly for all cyclists, I mentioned how I'd managed to reduce the cost substantially. As I've mentioned before, it always pays to shop around when buying new triathlon gear.
However in this case, I wanted the expert mechanics at Evans to carry out the work for me. Luckily Evans offer a price matching service where they will match the price of certain competitors, including Wiggle and Chain Reaction Cycles. While Evans mention this in their stores and on their website they obviously don't shout it from the rooftops but true to their word will match cheaper prices, obviously with certain terms and conditions. I therefore spent an hour or so checking the prices of the components I wanted with other websites the day before and saved myself a good 20% overall.
If I was a proficient mechanic and was happy to wait for the goods to arrive, I probably would have spread my purchases around as I don't agree with any company having a monopoly on a sector. However, if I'm in immediate need of an item, or in circumstances like this, it's a very useful service.
So what has this got to do with people sleeping in their cars on the M23? Well as it was Mother's Day I had to be parted from my pseudo new bike and visit mummy at the weekend. I get back, aching to see how the bike performs with its brand spanking new components and we get a massive dumping of snow. So surely I've got to take some responsibility?