I used to think biking was for three types of people: kids, trendy hipsters, and Lance Armstrong types.
That was before I took my first ride on a CitiBike. CitiBikeNYC was introduced to New York in May 2013, as an addition to our transit system and to help with the ‘greening’ of the city.
Many other cities have had bike shares for years and they have been extremely successful for tourists and locals alike. But, hey this is NYC – who’d be crazy enough to ride a bike here? Not me.
So, when New York announced that it was adopting a community bike program, while I loved the environmental element of it, I automatically decided that it was something for advanced cyclists and more coordinated people. I’m the first to admit that I lack coordination. Yes, I avoid most team sports and while I may be fit, public displays of fitness (outside of the gym) are something I avoid.
However, others were constantly raving about their CitiBike experience and I saw the iconic blue membership tag on key chains of unlikely candidates. This made me start to reconsider, but with reluctance.
Then there were those days when I desperately trying to hail a cab while running late and I’d see some very normal people whip by me on a Citibike.
Three months after the program launched my brother remembered that he hadn’t given me a Christmas present and said he would love to give me a CitiBike membership as a belated gift. This was my chance.
Now, two months into my membership, you can find me whipping across the city, in everything from sneakers and gym gear to stilettos and dresses. It’s my transportation of choice and from my point of view money well spent. From time saved to sights seen, my biking continues to brighten up my day.
I’m not unfamiliar with the arguments against the bikes, like the safety concerns and the lack of biking etiquette, but I remain a firm believer in the program, even after a few heart racing experiences of taxis narrowly missing me…it’s good cardio, right?
Last night as I biked across town, before going out on the town, I loaded my bike into the last open spot at the Broadway and 31st Street station and walked away in my club-ready attire, with the bonus of a glow from the excitement of the ride and a love of my city.
[Photo Credit: Eugenio Marongiu/Shutterstock.com]
How many of you are commuting by bike? Tell us all about it in a comment.