I’ve been having difficulty sleeping lately. And tomorrow at dawn I’m leaving for the longest, hottest, hardest ride of my life (tale pending). So I want to be able to sleep as well as I can beforehand.
Sometimes I lay awake at night going over the last minute details of the day(s) ahead. Just last night I was thinking through the contents of my seat bag. Everything checked out until I got to thinking about the inner tubes. Although there are two in there, one of them being my only backup for at least a year for rides near and far, I unraveled a few concerns. The one I’d been carrying with me had already been patched. I can’t remember how long ago. In fact, I can’t even remember the last time… wait, I better not say that. Anyway, today I inspected the inner tube and there were these tiny little wrinkles I guess you’d call them or cracks. I’m mostly sure that the inner tube is fine – that it would work – even if it had a slow leak it would get me going – probably.
As for the other inner tube, well, that one had been sitting around in the shed for a long time, too – tucked inside an old tire. It looked fine – no cracking. But the valve on that tube is slightly shorter – just enough to create a minor problem for the 1 cm deeper rims I’ll be riding tomorrow. Again, this tube would almost surely be fine and do the job if needed.
But it’s these little doubts that keep me awake in the night. They creep in after you think everything is fine and done and ready to go. So, purely as a sleep aid, I bought two new inner tubes – I’m pretty sure they have no known side effects.