Owning a car can be a real pain in the butt. Just ask the previous owner of not one but TWO Geo Metros. Of course there were definitely times when I thanked the heavens for that cute little hunk of metal, but after several breakdowns (of both myself and the car) I was adequately prepared to let it go to Geo heaven.
A few months later I bought my bike. I got it from a friend for 40 bones and I called it “Sabretooth.” After a few well-spent dollars getting it tuned up, this li’l bike was a force to be reckoned with. Electric blue body, mismatched tires, and a little ringy bell that alerted pedestrians and other bikers of my speedy approach. Is it coincidental that my cars were both electric blue as well? Not according to my horiscope. But I digress.
This was my first earnest attempt at biking in the city. I grew up in a small town, where my dad weened me off training wheels in the parking lot of the school bus garage. In the years following, my sister and I would ride our bikes (on the sidewalk, mind you) to our school, and then wheel our way down the steep driveway and back up the other side. The one who could get back up to the road without stopping was a champion, although we never competed. Biking was a childhood delight, and it felt like a little piece of freedom in an otherwise constrained existence.
Bicycling in the city as an adult on her way to work feels kind of different. I’ll admit that at first, I was completely terrified. “Bike on the road, you say? In amongst cars even? Who can live at that speed?!” Well, even the inexperienced and lazy, apparently! Of course, it took me a while to get my “biking legs,” but eventually I found my rhythm. While it’s not without its problems, biking in the city is pretty sweet, and it’s something I plan to do more of (and write more about) in the coming months.
In the meantime, check out the Halifax Cycling Coalition website!