I started my search for a bicycle on the Internet. This, apparently, was a mistake. First, I never found the "right" bicycle online. Second, the bicycle store that could offer me the "closest match" to what I wanted didn't actually sell bicycles. They showed them off on their website, but the French franchises of the chain did not, in fact, sell anything but clothes and children's bikes.
So I asked. And with the locals chatting back and forth, I got to "Go Sport" in a shopping mall. And they happened to have the perfect bike: the bike that fit the description of my wife's bicycle. Because obviously, I don't need a second bicycle. But my wife needed one.
This was a woman's 21 gear bicycle, flower patterns on frame and seat, shock absorbers on front wheel, quick release, adjustable steering wheel, 700C tyres narrow enough to not make much resistance, wide enough not to puncture just by looking at them. Perfect. This bicycle was not on any web page I had visited. It was better than my own, at half the price of my own, and came with a one year "we'll fix it anywhere in the world" guarantee.