Funny reminders

Sometimes I forget, but I live in quite an awesome city. Amsterdam. And whenever I forget, the city itself hands me a kind reminder, telling me “Hey you, look! It’s pretty lovely around here”. 

Like today. I’d done my errands and picked up a massive parcel which made it impossible to cycle. So I walked the last 10 minutes, looking like a pack-donkey. Almost home, I passed the local florist. Of course, from the corner of my eye I spotted flowers that were perfect for my collages, so I made a stop to have a look. They were perfect, so I wanted a bunch. Two things you can do: 

a. Walk home, dump stuff, return later.

b. Buy the flowers immediately, embracing your inner pack-donkey. 

I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t go with option b. The florist came to help me and the moment of payment arrived. Card at hand. He… only accepted cash. Solutions are there for those who need them, the ATM was two doors down. 

I started to clumsily fiddle with my bike and the several bags hanging from it. But “no, no, no, leave your bike and bags! Come on, in you go with that bike!” the florist said. Yes. He was bloody serious. I found myself riding my bike into the flower shop. Bags and parcels included. The florist would make sure it wouldn’t get stolen. 

He kept his word, I paid for my flowers, carefully rode the bike outside again, walked home and thought to myself “only in Amsterdam…what a wonderful city”. 

Flowers look so good on my bike.

All you single cyclists. Now put your helmets on.

Yes, you. Single cyclists of London. Put your helmets on, get on your bikes and of you go to SPIN London – the Urban Cycling Show – where my tall and Dutch friend Marge organises speed dating.

“But I’m not going on a speed-date…it’s lame.” Wrong! Change your attitude and try before you die. You’re gonna love it. Cause this ain’t just speed dating. It’s Cycle Speed Dating. For singletons who madly love their bikes but would love someone less cold and steel in their lives, too. Cyclists that only once per month manage to pull out a Boris Bike are cyclists too, so if you’re one of those and single and this sounds appealing to you? What are you waiting for.

Marge organises Cycle Speed Date events since 2013 and she does that with so much love and joy, that I can promise you with a hand on my heart it will be an evening you’ll never forget. Expect a warm and fun atmosphere. Expect likeminded people who, just like you, wish it was as safe to cycle in London as it is to cycle in Amsterdam (if you’re shy, use that as an opening: “Have you ever cycled in Amsterdam?” Or if rather come across as someone more in-depth: “Let me ask you this: how can we make London as safe for cyclists as Amsterdam?”). Usually the Cycle Speed Dating events take place at Look mum no hands! on Mare Street, but sometimes Marge pops up elsewhere in town. Par example; this weekend. This weekend – beginning on Friday the 8th of May – you’ll not only have the chance to do some serious bike-shopping, but also to join Marge at SPIN London. If you’ve never been on a speed-date before, this might be the moment… I can feel it.

You may find the bike of your life. Or the love of your life. And if you’re extra I-am-a-Sunday-kid lucky you may find the bike as well as the love of your life (not necessarily in that order).

As a singleton, yes I know exactly where I’d go if I were in London this weekend…

Cycle Speed Dating is coming to a town near you this Summer...

Cycle Speed Dating is coming to a town near you this Summer…

Cycle Speed Dating sessions:
Friday, May the 8th @ 8pm
Saturday, May the 9th @ 4pm

Click exactly here for more info on this week’s speeddating, signing up and tickets.

And to follow Cycle Speed Dating on social media and be up to date with future events, follow this link and this one.
Cycle Speed Dating events are coming to a town near you, this Summer!

Big result

When I got home from the grocery yesterday, I found two 9-year old boys and a broken bike on my doorstep. The chain had come off. They tried to fix it but it was clear they didn’t know how.

Before I knew it I was on my knees, helping them turn the bike upside down. It took us at least 5 minutes – I am not at all handy and I had to dig deep to get to the bike-mending area of my brain – but eventually the three of us booked success. Hands covered in chain oil, but we got the chain back on.

The boys thanked me and continued there bike-trip around the block. I searched for my keys, picked up my shopping bags and went inside.

Of all the things I’ve done this week, these 5 minutes of spontaneously getting my hands dirty were the best. Moments like these put a smile on my face for at least a couple of days.

Tiny little things, biggest results.