The Bicycle Diaries: Reporter took the pedal challenge during May Arts reporter Rosemary Ponnekanti took on the City of Tacoma’s Bike to Work month challenge during May--and lived to tell about it.
May was the City of Tacoma’s Bike to Work Month, so I decided to step up to the plate (or rather, the pedal). Yes, I rode my bike to work at The News Tribune for the whole month...And hey, it was fun! Car doors, yes; sweat, yes; rain, yes – but on the whole, this relapsed cyclist is now inspired to get back on the bike. Here’s the story of my personal Bike to Work month...
WEDNESDAY, MAY 21
Cool Moment You Don’t Get in a Car No. 1: Smelling the lilac blooming next to the road as you pass. In the rain, of course.
FRIDAY, MAY 30
Well, the end of my personal Bike to Work Month. Now what? I’m totally convinced that cycling is the way to go to work: fresh air, exercise, no gas expense, being at one with the universe...I’m now fully initiated into Northwest cycling, and can open pit zips in my jacket, dodge raindrops and drink coffee while cycling. (Actually, I’m making it up about the coffee. But I wish I wasn’t.)
Here’s my wish list for Tacoma, with ideas stolen from bike-friendly cities elsewhere.
1. Bike lanes that link to each other, and represent real commuting routes. (Amsterdam) 2. Bike racks outside all major businesses and public spaces. (Amsterdam) 3. Stands of free “ borrow-a-bikes ” around the city. (Paris, Barcelona) 4. Tough fines for drivers who sideswipe around corners. (Amsterdam) 5. A waterfront bike path, linking downtown, parks and beaches. (Melbourne) ( Read more.)
The coverage continues for Bike to Work Month. This first-person account of bicycle commuting isn't particularly remarkable (and it will be a good day when a person bicycling to work isn't "remarkable".) Except for the writer's conclusion for what Tacoma needs to become more bicycle friendly: lanes, racks, paths. Not a hint of a demand from this novice bike commuter for bicyclist education.