Books, Bikes, and Food

Reviews, Recipes, Rides… and some other things, too.

Mountain vs. Bike

3 Comments

Have I mentioned that there are a lot of hills, nay, mountains in my new home town? And that I live on top of one? Which is fantastic when considering the view out of my living room window (below), but not so much when it comes to cycling.

The benefits of living on a hill

I knew getting into town would be easy because it’s all downhill. I also had a feeling it would be much harder getting back home to my humble abode up Mount Doom. But isn’t one a power woman and stubborn to boot? There was no way I was admitting defeat without even having tried to cycle into town and back. So last week, I decided to test the waters while I was still on holiday. No work clothes, just a denim skirt, sweater, scarf, and jacket. Fabulous weather. Lots of time. I wanted to check out the local farmers’ market and run some other errands, so off I set. “Ha!”, I thought smugly as I zoomed downwards, “this isn’t even that steep! I’m gonna be fine!” It turned out I had quite a lot of shopping to do, involving heavy items such as juice, milk, wine, and potatoes, plus a few other things. This was my load, consisting of two shopping bags, my trusty cycling handbag, and a pack of, ehem, loo roll (don’t be confused by the mirror making it look like I had two of everything!).

Shopping load, magically doubled by my hallway mirror

What can I say? I got humiliated by my home mountain. I got… not even half way up before I had to get off and start pushing my bike. I got back on towards the end when things flattened out a bit, but I arrived home with the colour of my face matching the beets I’d just bought, sweating and panting like I’d finished a marathon. I’m a wuss, an #everydayonabike failure, because what I will most likely not be in this city is, well, every day on a bike. In Hamburg, which is flat as a tortilla, this kind of bike shopping wouldn’t even have been worth mentioning. I’ve been living in potential bike paradise, and I never appreciated it sufficiently. I salute all of you who regularly bike in mountainous cities. How do you do it?

Because I’m not about to lock my bike away and never look at it again. No way! I’ll find ways to make it work, so I appreciate any tips you guys might have. One option is to cycle in wearing my work clothes and then change into something more sporty before going back, and not do it every day. What do you think?

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Author: bettinathenomad

Nomadic fan of books, food, the outdoors, and water. International Relations geek. Chlorine is my perfume.

3 thoughts on “Mountain vs. Bike

  1. I don’t know how you carried so much stuff and biked up a mountain. That in itself is very impressive and admirable. I am sure that as you do it a few times you will get used to biking up the mountain. Though biking up a slope is always hard. I used to cycle to college during my student days and I had to cycle up a couple of bridges and it was hard in the beginning, but after a while I got used to it. I didn’t carry any heavy bags though. Hope you find out a way of having fun cycling in your mountainous home. All the best! The view outside your window is very beautiful. So jealous of you 🙂

  2. Pingback: Bringing Biking Back | Books, Bikes, and Food

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