Posts Tagged ‘cycling’
Here’s the thing about riding a bicycle in new places: it’s like learning how to ride a bike all over again. No matter how used to the bicycle you are – at home in Portland I don’t even own a car – discovering a new city on two wheels makes you fall in love with cycling all over again. It’s a challenge. Navigating streets you have never walked down before, learning the ins and outs of local bike culture, figuring out how traffic works. There’s a flow to cycling, and each city has its own variation.
Sometimes you feel like you are in the midst of a Portlandia episode.
It’s fall, and despite the warm air you can tell the rain will eventually get here. But for now the bike ride home is beautiful; quiet, still, almost balmy. The waterfront is practically abandoned as people have committed their evenings to activities that align with the season. With no one out except the few well trained runners, you can ride as fast or slow as you want with no interruptions. Lights reflect on the water and the warm air haze makes for a colorful sunset. It’s moment like this to love where you live.
Seen at a Statoil station in Denmark:
You can care for your bicycle here. You can pump and wash your bicycle and, inside the shop, you’re welcome to borrow a free bicycle care kit with oil, tire levers, allen keys, etc.
“When the spirits are low, when the day appears dark, when work becomes monotonous, when hope hardly seems worth having, just mount a bicycle and go out for a spin down the road, without thought on anything but the ride you are taking.” – Arthur Conan Doyle
More great bike quotes here.
The Portland bike community never ceases to inspire me. Last night Epic Wheel Works hosted their one-year anniversary party, the bike throwdown and benefit for the Bicycle Transportation Alliance that was one big get together of bike enthusiasts and people that believe in making their community a better place.
I’ve got to give it to Jude, founder of Epic, who truly believes in the idea that bikes can make the world a better place, and as she puts it, she’s making positive chance “one revolution at a time.” That and her wheels are simply works of art. If that doesn’t inspire you to go hop on your bike, I don’t know what will.
NYC cycling is its own special thing. Stop signs don’t really count as stop signs, stop lights are merely for good measure and even designated bike lanes aren’t really like bike lanes in any other city; at least people believe in helmets. But that’s what makes riding in the city fun.
Ringing the bell incessantly as you cross the Brooklyn Bridge and having to maneuver around children flying by on wooden trikes. Dodging tourists in Chinatown with that smell of outdoor markets and produce hanging in the air that’s reminiscent of previous visits to Asia. Raising your hand in disgust at the drivers completely oblivious to the fact that a bicycle was ever invented. But on two wheels, the big city feels manageable, even more friendly. Which is why you keep ringing the bell.
Fabulous event next Thursday for the wonderful Epic Wheel Works. A female-operated custom wheel building company… love it!
Portland, OR is own for having a distinct flair, and there’s no better way to get a feel for the city than through some of it’s excellent style and design blogs. Ready to get to know why Portland is the up and coming hotspot? Here are my top 5 Portland blog picks.
- Urban Weeds – Simple, sleek and yet with a little bit of funk, Urban Weeds is quintessential Portland style. Features on local designers and shop owners as well as classic pictures from the street.
- Velocouture – Ok, so Velocouture isn’t exactly a Portland-centric blog, but it’s published locally and focuses on one of the city’s favorite pastimes: cycling. Plenty of proof that choosing two wheels over four doesn’t mean sacrificing style.
- Portland Loves: Local – Portland is home to a plethora of creative and cutting edge designers, and Portland Loves: Local gives homage to them all. Beyond that, the blog is simply a collection of all the things that make Portland wonderful, and sure to inspire new visitors.
- Portland Architecture – A visual exploration of the city’s buildings and designs, Portland Architecture should be the first stop for anyone with an interest in Portland’s urban feel. With all the architecture focused blogs out there, it’s nice to have one that’s committed to local coverage.
- BikePortland – You can’t experience Portland without experiencing bikes, and BikePortland is the number one spot for cycling related news, style, and beyond.