I live in a city that does no favours to those who choose to get about by means other than a car. I have (rather foolishly, some will say) used other ways of getting around the city. You know; walking, riding a bicycle, public transport. The car is usually the only realistic option. But my household has also deliberately incorporated our transport choices into our life style.
The Ninja Princess and I have always been urban explorers. The bicycle has increasingly become the means of adventure and exploration. Increasingly, we have been documenting the stuff we have been doing. And experiencing the city by bicycle is a revelation for the senses. It really is magic.
Having her beside me on her own bicycle has also put a completely different lens on the ‘mobility in the city’ experience. My sense of the hostile state of the transport landscape has been heightened dramatically. We ride slowly. We avoid busy roads and intersections. We don’t always feel welcome on the road by motorists, even though we do our utmost to ‘share with care’. But most importantly, we keep on riding and exploring.
The stuff that appears on this site are simply reflections of my/our experiences in the transport landscape. Sometimes it may sound strongly worded and emotional. Or anti-car, heaven forbid. But it’s not. It’s just observational. I wish that the people who are responsible for planning our transport landscape will read this and go for a ride on their bicycles with their young children or grand children. It would be a valuable experience, for everyone.
If I was in charge of our city I would set it up like I set up my classroom of new entrants. Nobody gets left behind or forgotten. Everyone is catered for. It’s a cultural thing. And the children love it. It’s good for everyone. It feels human. Now that would be a radical departure from where we are currently at.
‘Cycling’ is sport and recreation. ‘Riding a bicycle’ is everyday activity. No sweat. As easy as walking, but faster.
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