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Archive for September, 2012

This past Saturday, about forty of us met up at Paradise Garage to remember a wonderful friend.  Red bandanas were made with Kevin’s initials – KMH and we all wore them in remembrance.  Kevin had the fortunate opportunity to experience the National Bike Summit in D.C. last year.  He spoke with Senator Brown about how important funding is for the continuance of bike/ped improvements, he met other advocates from around the country, and I think the experience opened his eyes about so many possibilities in which he could potentially be  a part of.  He told me that he was already beginning to save up for the 2013 Bike Summit.

Because of Kevin’s love for biking and making the roads safer for everyone, Kevin’s family has been having friends and family send any donations to Consider biking.  We’ve received quite a gracious amount.  What we’d like to do is set up a scholarship in his name that helps bring another young and passionate bike rider to D.C. to have their eyes opened.

Thank you to all who came and rode with us.

Ride safe.  Keep riding.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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I’ve been on pretty much a three week ‘tour’ on the west coast.  I began with an awful travel trip to San Francisco (which I plan on writing SWA and letting them know).  Then, after a week out there, I flew to Long Beach where I had the most incredible and mentally stimulating 8 days I’ve had in years.

It began with a kick ass retreat with Alliance of Biking & Walking.  Advocates from all over the U.S. and even Alaska were at this retreat to talk about ”how do we make biking and walking’ priority numero UNO.  There are some amazing people doing amazing, incredible things around the nation.  I have been so lucky to meet a lot of these folks and get to know them to where now I can reach out and bounce ideas off of them.

We also held a Women’s Caucus at the retreat which was super empowering.  As many of you know, I have been devoting much of my time to empowering more women to ride their bikes.  I’m happy to state as well that I have been organizing my program which I have received funding for.  It will be a non-competitive girls bicycling empowerment program and I’m calling it, ‘Girls in Gear.’  I am still working with some folks regarding logo design however, I have finished the curriculum and everyone that I’ve mentioned this to is SUPER excited about.  I LOVE talking about it.  My goal is for this empowerment program to be a template for other cities to mold to what they are attaining for.  I plan to present at the next 2014 Pro Walk / Pro Bike Conference with the successes of this program.  I was also informed that in Feb. 2013, there is the Youth Bicycle Summit held in NYC which I’d love to attend 🙂

After the Alliance retreat was the Pro Walk / Pro Bike Conference which close to 900 Advocates, Planners, Engineers, etc. attended this conference to hear about best practices being applied all over the U.S.  Keynote speakers ranged from Fred Kent – the Principal of ‘Projects for Public Spaces’ and I got to meet him.  I tell you, it was like meeting a celebrity.  Other speakers such as councilwoman Suja Lowenthal (councilwoman for L.B.) was super inspiring and should I seriously consider running for City Council, I’m ringing her up for advice.  She.  Gets.  Shit.  Done.  Also, Mikael Coville-Anderson spoke.  What can I say about this character.  Well, he’s a tease b/c we were suppose to have whiskey together but I guess he couldn’t handle it (or me :)).  I can be content with the Thursday evening.  Great public speaker and energizing.

Finally, after non-stop of a good 11 days, I finally made it down to San Diego where I have totally decompressed.  I have biked with my friends, spent time at the beach, surfed and just calmed both my mind and my body.  It’s been a pleasure.

In Ocean Beach yesterday while I was sitting at Pizza Port, there were SO MANY bike riders in this neighborhood.  This is the neighborhood that I’d live in if I move to San Diego.  What was great about these riders is is that all their bikes were salt-rusted from the ocean air and they were literally transportation tools for people.  You didn’t see fancy bikes and if you did, THEY were the ones out of place.  Cruisers galore around this laid back neighborhood.

The pictures speak for themselves.  We need to look at our bicycles as ‘tools.’  People ask me often what ‘type’ of bike they should buy.  I tell them certain specifics like fit and reach but other details like aesthetics and brand, who cares.  I’d say, if you find one at a garage sale, even better.  You don’t need fancy.  Personally, the older, the better in terms of character.

I’m headed back to Cbus tomorrow and I’m not sure how I feel about it 🙂  I’m excited but also sad at the same time.

Be safe and keep riding!

 

bikes locked up everywhere in the sand

 

it was fantastic seeing groups of kids riding their bikes… IN THE ROADS 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

You know you’re in San Diego when you have this beautiful view

 

 

Those are backpack chairs.. for the beach.  ❤

Only in San Diego…

 

 

When you can casually check your cell phone while riding your bike, you know life is leisure.  Traffic appeared very patient and that’s what I loved as well.  Everyone seemed to get along (walkers, skateboarders, bikers, drivers, uni-cyclists, etc.)

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I spent a glorious week here in the city that I can’t quit.  When ever I land into SFO and hop onto BART, I feel this sense of calmness that covers me like an invisible bubble.  I also feel that I become a different person.  A person who feels like she’s ‘home.’  The diversity of this city fills me up with such joy.  The way that this city continues to improve for the better and will become one of the most sustainable cities in the country; well, its incredible to watch this happen every time I come back.

San Francisco is a different kind of city.  Its made up of a lot of transients from all over the world.  Maybe that’s why this city has such determination from its people to become such a great city.  San Francisco is a petri dish and everyone is willing and active to put in some kind of ingredient or another which seems to be working.

Nothing gives me greater pleasure than to just watch the theatrics of this city by just sitting at a coffee shop.  Parklets are every where.  On-street bike corrals are so abundant that’s its almost like they’ve always existed here.  There are protected bike lanes that lead onto very heavily traffic streets such as San Jose Blvd.  There are green lanes on Market and the newly improved ‘Wiggle,’ regular bike lanes everywhere and if there aren’t bike lanes, there are sharrows.  Market St. is like High St.  Its the backbone to the city.  This morning prior to my departure, I took the BART to Powell St. Station and just watched and got my fix of early morning bustling of San Franciscans.  I felt alive.  I couldn’t keep up with pictures.  There were so many bike riders that I became over whelmed.

I want this very thing to happen in Columbus but it won’t happen until infrastructure is laid down and laid down – SMARTLY.  Infrastructure needs to be thought through with women and children in mind.  If this happens then the infrastructure should be laid down smartly and safely.  The best way to change behavior is to change the infrastructure.  When a ’roundabout’ is put in in Hillard, people are uncertain and will probably complain at first but then like anything else, it becomes habit and then just another piece of infrastructure.  It’s no different with bicycle infrastructure.

Protected bike lanes.  Green lanes.  Buffered bike lanes.  Bicycle dedicated signals.  All make for safer commutes and also draws out more riders of all levels.  San Francisco is surrounded by water on three sides.  It’s only seven miles big and cannot build out.  San Francisco has to make due with what they have and they are.  They are redesigning their streets for ALL people.  If San Francisco can do this, so can we.  We need leaders who are willing to piss a few ppl off in order to make our city thrive.

Mayor Coleman said in a speech once:  ‘If we continue to stay the same, we’ll get left behind.’  I’m tired of staying the same and tired of continually playing catch up.  I want leaders willing to risk their positions in order to do GREAT and innovative things.  I’d rather be the leader who was remembered as being ballsy as opposed to a leader who was status quo.

We still have a problem retaining young people and once again, its all due to lack of options in transportation.  I am one of those people who WILL LEAVE this city if things do not change and change SOON.  I assure you Columbus, it’ll be your loss.

Here are a few pictures of this morning on Market St.  Folks commuting via two wheels.  Buses in the back ground, people walking.  A city that’s ALIVE.

Be safe and keep riding:

 

 

 

 

 

 

Etiquette:  Walking your bike through a cross-walk.

Another great example of proper biker etiquette.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Waiting for green light

 

 

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