Monday, 10 January 2000
It's the weekly sales night. At last I find some time to pick up the microwave from last Week's Nut. Buying a microwave is one thing. Getting the thing home is another matter. My original plan was to be here with a car, but that did not work out. So, in an optimistic mood, I kind of planned the thing at the back of my bicycle.

My own old microwave is just bug enough for one plate. I can carry the small thing easily, to all kinds of eating festivities. Well, here I am now, with a giant box next to my bicycle. Did I miss how microwaves have grown enormously during the past years? Which bare idiot thought this thing would fit on the back of my bike? Probably didn't go outdoors since WWII, have you? Well, that bare idiot was me myself. A little knowledge is a dangerous thing

So, what's next. Here I am, with logistic planning as field of expertise. Yes, what a way to go, really blond. Rob Dernee offers me to arrange transport, but I reject his offer pig headed as I am. I saw complete inventories passing by on a bicycle. So I should be able manage one simple microwave, shouldn't I. It's a cute puzzle. The luggage carrier seems too small. The microwave would fall off immediately. So, on the saddle and handlebar? Not to good as well, but not the worst either. Off I go, walking towards home.

The bicycle does not steer any more. At every turn I have to drag the whole thing into a new direction. On the straight parts I hold my bike with one hand, and balance the microwave with the other. Meanwhile, I'm two blocks down the road and already exhausted. Sweat pours down my head. I'm soon to face a major obstruction on my track: a steep tunnel. Going down won't be too bad. My left had is just able to reach for the brake. But how am I going to ascend with this whole thing? I need both my hands just for the balance. Pushing is going to be difficult. Well, a problem is only a problem when it really occurs. Go, go go! Downwards goes fine, and the way back up is not too bad.

Yet, it's another kilometre to home. It's about time for a revaluation and a new strategy. At the top of the tunnel I take a break for a little contemplation.

I would prefer to cycle the remaining bit, bit the big box on the luggage carrier at the back. But, with the microwave on the luggage carrier the whole will make a backwards somersault. What to do? I park the whole thing against a picket. Would the box fit if I put it sideways? Would something disastrous happen inside? I haven't got a clue, just try, and behold: it does fit! The bike now tends go fall backwards, but with my own weight on the saddle that won't be a problem any more.

The bike withstands it all. With my left hand I steer and brake. With my right hand I balance the microwave. It's an balance exercise that would make my Tai Chi master jealous. Now, all I need is speed. I accelerate with difficulty. I progress, slowly but steadily. Some crossings ahead. Fortunately they are free of traffic.

A few minutes later I enter the finale: Advanced dismounting. I can't dismount. I carefully try to life the microwave with one hand and put it on the ground. It works, although the box is slightly damaged.

At home I celebrate this successful transport with a cool foaming blond. It's not really worth repeating, but another good memory to look back at. a microwave on a bicycle isn't cool.

Till next week!