Deciding upon a bicycle

So, I did my taxes last night, and upon getting a satisfactory amount for a refund, I decided I’d like to reward myself with getting a bicycle once the money goes through.  Not a “bike,” but a bicycle.  I live near so many great areas in Orlando, I thought a bicycle might be the ticket for rides to the different community and farmer’s markets we have nearby (Audubon Park, Eola and Winter Park), as well as to my post office box in College Park, the Gay Asian Publix, Barnes & Noble, Park Ave CDs, Stardust, B3 Cafe….

I’m not familiar with local bike jargon, so I know what sort of bicycle I want… I think.  Ideally, I’d like to find something simple, nice and utilitarian.  And black, preferably.  At first, I thought about looking at the “beach cruisers” genre of bicycles, but they seemed a bit too much for me in terms of style.  Perhaps a commuter bicycle would do better?

I turn to the Googles.  And see something I like: simple, nice and utilitarian.  Excitedly, I read up on the Breezer Uptown 8 model, because the style is perfect.  

The reviews are good, with one calling it “a complete tank of a bike.”  Oh boy!  I look onto another site for the pricing… $1,159.99!

Ugh, no.  Maybe if I were living in Copenhagen and didn’t have car payments… or student loan payments.  Or any other payments, for that matter.

Okay, so I want a commuter bike, but I don’t plan to be doing a lot of commuting to work on it.  I want to commute to fun stuff, to adventure which will hopefully involve food and, perhaps, drink.  I want enough room for a basket or one of these nifty panniers from Queen Bee Creations.

I’m a little apprehensive about getting a bike, excuse me, a bicycle off of Craigslist, as it might be stolen (“SELLER MUST SELL QUICKLY!”).  I wouldn’t mind a used bicycle, but I’d prefer buying from a store if it is used.

Any suggestions in the Orlando area?

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