Jul
9
2018

Trail Ramblings: What’s New, Lincoln?

We’re back in Lincoln now, but we spent a week in Japan on the way home. I loved watching the bike paths from our hotel window in Tokyo. In that area many people ride basketed commuter bikes, locked only with a mounted wheel lock.

Tokyo U’s bicycle parking is so civilized!

Two child carriers, front and back, were common fixtures. I noticed those bikes often had an e-assist boost.

Much bike parking is highly organized and protected from the weather.

Our hosts did not ride bikes, so we did not ride around ourselves, unfortunately. They drive on the left though anyway, which freaked me out somewhat riding in Thailand. Maybe some other time I’ll manage to ride there.

Apparently many small children are transported by bicycle in Tokyo.

After so long at bike share ground zero in China, it seemed odd not to see any bike shares in Tokyo, though there were rental bikes in Kamakura.

Share bikes in Zhengzhou, and every other city I’ve seen in China, are common.

We spent half of our week an hour north of Tokyo, ¬†which though lacking shoulders and hilly, wasn’t busy and would have made good riding. It was beautiful, sandwiched between the sea and mountains.

This fellow was creating a surfboard carrier. I saw another surfer carrying his board under his arm while riding his bike.

Here in Lincoln I hadn’t even unpacked before I was back to work, and I’m pleased there seem to be more bicycle commuters than ever! I’ve seen many friends on the trails already. I haven’t been everywhere yet, but already I’ve noticed changes. New buildings have gone up and the North 10th Street bridge has been re-opened. I do admit that it’s been a struggle to re-adjust from the traffic lawlessness of Zhoukou, where regulations seem merely a suggestion. I’m reveling in the clean air, though I still find myself reaching for a mask when I go for a ride.

Around Zhoukou farms are much smaller, with a combination of ancient and modern farming techniques practiced. The mounds here are the tombs of bygone farmers.

The lower density of people here is striking. In Zhoukou and the surrounding area it was rare not to see people out and about always, even in the countryside. Where there is a farm here, there would be an entire village there, the land divided into long, narrow plots, often growing different crops.

There are many other differences as well, such as the speed of the average commuter, which seems faster here than either China or Japan, as well as the type of bikes most ridden. In these cultures there is less bike thievery too, though it still can happen.

I’m looking forward to seeing what else is new here and re-visiting my favorite rides around Lincoln.

1 Comment + Add Comment

  • Glad you are writing these things down.