29 October 2010

Why you need a front rack on your bike

Carrying a dessert to a dinner party just isn't the same when you can't keep an eye on it, particularly if it's fragile and still hot from the oven.

(Yes Cycler, it's a tarte tatin, which I should not have made in a springform pan, but it tasted delicious anyway)

26 October 2010

Independent Fabrications City Bike

Spotted sometimes on Newbury Street, this bike always makes my husband stop for a second look. Those green and yellow rims are even the Indy Fab colors.

One thing that's made clear by this rusting steel washer and nut next to a pristine seat stay - a titanium frame makes some sense for an all-season bike like this one. Expensive for all of us who don't work at IndyFab, but certainly practical in Boston!

25 October 2010

High Fashion Safety Vest

This submission from my dear friend E reminds me a bit of Karl Lagerfeld's safety campaign from 2008, though this lady is in Iceland, not France.

Isn't she fun? I love the reflective sash accent on her high-visibility top, but the bustier treatment and halter neckline are just perfect. Yes it's overtly safety gear but it's so much fun that I have to love it.

22 October 2010

Sweet Bike Spotted at Harvard Med

Just looking at this bike it's clear that a lot of time and love went into its creation.

This photo doesn't capture it so well, but those Sun rims have "facets", much like the Honjo Le Paon fenders. The different faces of the rim catch the light differently.

I'm pretty sure this bike belongs to a taller gentleman.

I love the powder grey cable housing he chose with his powder blue bike. It reminds me of a bike I saw way back on Newbury Street, in more of a ladies' size. I called it "Cloud Bike" I wonder if we could find a way to introduce those two?

18 October 2010

I'm going to ride my bike until I get home...

Monday afternoon, missing the weekend, this video made me smile:

It even has a Brompton in the very beginning!

Bicycle Palio - Palio delle Biciclette

In Siena there is an ancient horse race called the Palio. It's clear from talking to people, reading books on the region, and just visiting and seeing the art of the place that the Palio is a big deal. This photo, showing just one bareback rider in ancient costume, with the town square packed with spectators, conveys a bit of the excitement.

So we were happy and amused to see that there is a much newer Bicycle Palio, and I'm just sorry we didn't get to see it happen. I've looked extensively but can only find photos of the horse race version (which of course looks fun too). Someday!

15 October 2010

Florence Pedicab

How much fun is this modern-looking pedicab! Notice the passenger is sitting back and taking photos as they cruise past the Duomo.

Roman Bike Share

I am sad to report that we never even tried the Roman bike share system. I got the best photos I could but most of the racks we saw were completely empty of bikes and we only saw one other couple riding them, once. I fear it's a bike share that failed.

It's all really too bad, because we discovered that in the city itself one bank of the Tiber is devoted to a bike lane, providing a high-speed safe beeline right through town. A cyclist could easily beat a taxi or subway rider on any cross-town adventure. Next time we're going to bring Bromptons.

Mystery Revealed?

Early one morning I saw this bicycle parked casually, Italian-style, and wondered who would have such a large basket on their bike.

Hours later, and in another part of town, I saw this elegant woman. Only in reviewing my photos later did I start to wonder - I think that's the owner of the interesting bike!

What do you think?

Colnago Townie

It's not everywhere you can see a Colnago townie city bike left casually on the street.

This bell on the Colnago was our first indication that Bianchi is based in Florence:

Italian Couples on Bikes

The bicycle date is alive and well in Italy - and very romantic.

For much of our trip this had been the only other sporty couple we saw.

On the last day, just before going to the airport we saw this couple rolling in to town. They were entering through the northern gate to Rome (Via Cassia), so we imagined they'd ridden here from the Netherlands, or something like that.

At any rate, it looks like they've come a long way!

Dogs on Bikes in Rome

These weren't the only canines on two wheels we saw, it seemed much more common there. But these were the only instances I managed to photograph.

Doesn't this second dog look like he's contemplating jumping down?

Red Bikes of Italy

I could not possibly have photographed all of them if I tried, so instead I'll just tell you that there was a definite preference for red bicycles all over Italy. It was a lot of fun to play "spot the red bicycle".

In appreciation of that, and all the beautiful things that are made in Italy, when it came time to choose a souvenir, I got the most delicious, delicate, racy and wonderful new pair of cycling gloves. Watch me signal my turns now Boston!!!

Italian Ladies on Bikes

 Girlfriends riding into Florence early in the morning.
 This ladies' scarf fluttered in a most beguiling way.
 Love this lady's sleek look.

 This lady was slowed in her turn by mobs of tourists, but she and her lovely legs still made it across the square in style.
 This lady's genie-style trousers worked well for cycling.
 My impression was that the age range of Italian female cyclists was more compressed to the younger end than in France, but there was some variation.
 LOVED her cute yellow bike!

 These ladies were cycling through the chicest neighborhood in Florence, and prompted me to reflect on the timeless good looks of black bicycles.

 Though I would encourage this woman to raise her saddle (if I spoke better Italian), I still thought she looked beautiful riding through the afternoon sun near the tomb of Augustus.
Italian light, Italienne sparkle, and all in white linen - perfect!