Last Thursday I did my weekly bus ride home with the bike. My daughter takes a class at the Rose Theater (she's in the picture at that link: bottom center) after school on Thursdays, so I grab a bus toward home and bike the last half mile. I don't change clothes for this, but rather throw on my warm riding jersey jacket and high-visibility Vagabond wind breaker. I then drive her to the class, and go back to work for about and hour and half.
I recall that last Thursday was pretty mild, and I was in a hurry to catch the bus, so I just threw on the jersey and put the Vagabond jacket under the flap of my pannier.
Friday morning, I discovered that my Vagabond jacket was nowhere to be seen! I hadn't even opened the pannier, so I don't think I took it out and misplaced it. Friday morning I rode back along the same route I used on Thursday, in hopes that I would find the jacket. No such luck. Lost and found at MAT, my employer, and my employer's fitness center hadn't seen it either.
Like a true vagabond, I guess the jacket thought it was time to pull up its shallow roots and head off somewhere else in search of adventure. My only hope is that someone find it and recognizes it for what it is, and not mistake it for some cheap, flimsy windbreaker.
The Vagabond is a Pearl Izumi product, so it's a tad on the expensive side. I didn't want to buy a new one unless I had to. So before ordering one (the local Trek stores were out of stock) I checked out Sports Authority. I've noticed that they have a Canari brand of cycling clothing that typically runs about half the price of the PI stuff. There I found a high-visibility yellow jacket with all the same features as the Vagabond:
- water resistant
- zip out sleeves, turning it into a vest
After wearing it for half a week, I can say that it's almost as good as the Vagabond, but not quite. It seems to get a little stiff in the cold, where the Vagabond did not. I also like the better fit of the PI product, especially around the wrists. I think the Canari jacket has more reflective piping on the back.
The Canari sleeves zip out individually, whereas the Vagabond has a unique one piece design for the sleeves. I am not sure which is better, as it's pretty simple to zip in and out the sleeves on the Canari jacket, whereas it takes some alignment with three Velcro patches to get the sleeves back on the Vagabond.
I have two Canari products now and so far, they seem to be good quality, and at half the price of the Pearl Izumi line, it might be worth it to save some cash.
The Good Loss
This morning before dressing and leaving the house for an 8°F ride, I stepped on the scale and was hit with a nice number: 193. This number is significant in that it's full 20 pounds lighter than my first day of bike commuting, almost six months ago to the day. It's also the lightest I've been since I topped out at 250 during my fat days back in 2001.
My next goal is to reach an even 190 and go buy some new pants.