Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Why I Bike: Jan

When did you learn to ride your bike? Who taught you?   

I can’t remember being taught to ride a bike!   Bike-riding was part of my earliest, fondest memories.  I just don’t remember having training wheels all that long because I wanted to keep up with the slightly older kids in the neighborhood who rode their bikes everywhere in the neighborhood.  After I learned and was in middle school, I rode 20 or 25 miles some days in the summer.  It was glorious seeing so much from my bike – what freedom!

In what city and state do you live?
Now live in South Bend, Indiana, but have lived in Portland OR, DC,and Milwaukee – all places where I’ve loved to ride my bike.

What is the biking culture like there? 
The biking culture is growing in South Bend.  Big focus on bike trails and bike paths now in past 5 years – great to see.

What kind of bike (or bikes) do you have?   
I proudly own a Townie Electra – the ultimate commuter bike.  I also still own the 26” hot red Schwinn coaster-break bike that I rode until I was 16.  I logged too many miles on that bike to part with it and it’s moved with me several times!

How often do you ride your bike? 
Commuting to work and errands daily during the week;  on weekends, I enjoy riding the bike trails along the river in South Bend near our home.

Do you have a bike story? 
Teaching my youngest son Kevin to ride without training wheels!   Kevin so desperately wanted to learn to ride on his 6th birthday – he told me that would be the best birthday ever if he did!  He practiced, practiced, and practiced – and on his 6th birthday he put it all together!  Seeing him ride off down the block, confident and so happy, will always be a special memory to cherish.

I wish drivers...would respect that bikes are vehicles too.

I would ride my bike even more if...I lived in a balmier climate.

My favorite bike snack:
Fresh local fruit that’s in season – berries, apples, cherries – yumm!!

My favorite piece of bike gear are:
my Saddlebags.  They are deep and wide, and  I don’t ever hesitate to go anywhere because I can stash so much in them – work gear, outing gear, overnight stuff.  They helped transform my bike-riding – now I don’t hesitate to go anywhere!

Do you ride your bike in all weather? 
No.  I wish I did.  But our winters are so full of ice and snow I wait until the thaw comes to ride again.

Do you own a car?   
Yes. We have a bunch of kids and to handle traveling with them we needed a car.  All of them enjoy biking, though, which makes me very happy.
My favorite thing about riding my bike.... 
is that I observe much more of my surroundings when I bike.  I see things I don’t notice when I drive in a car, neighborhoods and people and nature all look different. I love  soaking up those details when biking!

The coolest trip I’ve done on my bike…. 
The Kal-Haven trail ride in Michigan – gorgeous 80 mile RT that ends up in Kalmazoo, done with BFFs over a weekend.  Did it in fall and the autumn colors were breathtaking!

The bike trip I’m dying to do… 
Poland by bike.  That’s where my family is from, I’ve never been there, and some touring friends of mine said that is the best way to see new countries and landscapes. 

Why do you bike?

1 comment:

  1. I just bought a fuji mountain bike! I bike to the gym and thought the suburb streets of PA. Biking is the best exercise!!


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