I rode my bicycle today for the first time since arriving back in Auckland. Here is my Auckland bicycle:
It was very strange riding a regular bicycle again. It’s not true what they say, that you never forget how to ride a bike, because I was very wobbly and unsure of myself. The handlebars are directly above the front wheel on this bike, as on most bikes, but on Busby they’re about a metre apart. This made the steering very sensitive. I found it much harder to balance with Elizabeth’s weight on the back too. The centre of gravity is all wrong. On Busby, it is low to the ground and in front of me. On this bike, it’s high and behind me which makes it less steady in my view. Busby is also in a completely different league compared to this shitty “Made in China” piece of crap. Busby takes corners and bumps with grace. Nothing beats a Dutch bakfiets. It’s possible to buy “Made in China” versions of the Dutch cargobike but I would steer clear of these like the plague. Even if I did not have children to cart around, I would still want to ride a Dutch bakfiets.
Elizabeth told me she prefers the bike with the box but she still loved being out cycling again. Both kids love going for bike rides. I know that I promised Gerry Brownlee that I’d cycle everywhere in Auckland but the truth is, I’m just too chicken. When we arrived in Auckland last week and began our drive home from the airport, we stopped at the first of about 1000 traffic lights and Daniel asked, “Does York have traffic lights?”. It sounds like a funny question because yes of course York has traffic lights but when I think about the journeys we made there, we rarely stopped at any. We cycled everywhere but most of the rides were on off-road bicycle paths and quiet back streets all of which were completely free of traffic lights and traffic for that matter.