Cyclists in Amsterdam

They are everywhere, just as everyone said they would be.  They behave like my Prius – suddenly and silently they are right behind you.  On the first day, we learned quickly which were the bike lanes and they do mostly keep to them.  Some of them even signal when they’re about to make a turn, and some fewer of them even ring their bells when they’re right behind you.

Leaving Central Station, we saw this enormous bicycle parking garage.  DSC04173There are, roughly, zillions of them.  We wondered whether this meant that people parked their bikes here and then commuted into a different part of the city, or what.  You’d think a commuter lot would be in the suburbs somewhere…

Here is how people ride bikes here.

  • wearing high heels
  • wearing a mini-skirt
  • wearing high heels AND a mini-skirt
  • wearing a suit and dress shoes
  • wearing stockings, short shorts and sandals
  • wearing flip-flops
  • smoking
  • talking on the telephone
  • smoking AND talking on the telephone
  • carrying a toddler on a seat perched on the handlebars
  • carrying a child in a seat perched behind yours
  • carrying a child/groceries/unknown stuff in a little wooden cart attached to back of the bike
  • carrying a plastic bag in one hand in which rests a bakery box, balancing it upright lest the cake be smushed
  • carrying a cat in a fabric cat carrier behind your seat

To be continued…

4 responses to “Cyclists in Amsterdam

  1. That’s just how people ride in Portland! But the bike parking is intermingled with the businesses or in car lots with special secure boxes to hold the bikes out of sight.

  2. And also wearing klompen!

  3. I think we saw three helmets during the entire trip – definitely a different culture. I didn’t see klompen but I’m sure they were out there. I did see lots of heels and short skirts, though.

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