Sunday, July 20, 2008

Yet another bike.

If you're ever lost in Beijing, I highly recommend you follow this bloke. He looked like he knew you select the bike and the store mechanic where he was going, which happily was the rough direction of my hotel.

I bought a cheap bike at the supermarket today . Getting to the supermarket involved a somewhat lengthy cab ride across Beijing - which cost a total of $3 Australian. Inside, as a good proportion of the city's 15 million shoppers play dogem trolleys tightens a few bolts while you go and find the cashier and go through the no language in common paying pantomime. You then collect the bike and wheel it through the supermarket crowds in search of an exit. Lots of fun.

As you can see from the photo below it's a pretty stunning machine. For $80 I'm pretty happy with it. One gear, 26 inch tyres, reasonably comfortable saddle. Hopefully it will last the duration of my stay.

Beijing has wide cycleways at the side of every road. Cyclists seem to be able to ride in either direction on either side of the road, which sounds chaotic but works ok as nobody goes too fast. Cars and buses sound their horn to give you warning they're approaching and give you time to get out of the way. Intersections are a little chaotic but I either walk or wait for someone who looks like a local - which is pretty much everyone at present.

Chinese bike aficionados will note my mighty steed is from the venerable Flying Pigeon stable. Foolishly I declined a basket, something I regretted almost as soon as I got out of the store. I'll tyr to pick one up in the next few days. It will be a handy place to put a camera.

1 comment:

Treadly and Me said...

Nice looking city bike, but your should have got that basket. If it's a real Flying Pigeon, it will definitely outlast your stay--provided it doesn't get 'arf inched!