The Green Dollar
Cycling Adventures

Cycling records for the last 2 weeks

Starting out a MRT trip from Buona Vista instead of Dover saves you 4 cents. So now I cycle to Buona Vista MRT station. The pedestrian path is smoother and safer. Since the last blog entry, there was a night trip to Queenstown library at about 8.45pm, a trip to Buona Vista MRT at about 10.45am  to the Esplanade last Monday, and there was another trip to the Buona Vista MRT station today.

The trip from my place to Queenstown library took about 20 minutes, and the return took about 30 minutes. There was a slight drizzle and paths were smoother and there was less friction on the tyres. Went dangerously without a hind light and I almost hit a girl along the path after the road junction after Commonwealth MRT that leads to Queenstown MRT because the path was under the shade of trees, blocking out street lamp light. Thought about whether there was a need to design environmentally friendly ponchos, and the answer is yes for frivolity sake, but also better is design for water proof stick-on for clothing on the appropriate areas. Very enjoyable ride, but as you know, it’s acid rain these days so an urgent shower once I got home. Cloth bag in front withstood light drizzle.

Went to Pasir Ris and Tampines last Saturday and saw a sheltered rack at Tampines and the two tiered bicycle rack at Tampines. Can see quite a number of them were abandoned or neglected possibly due to weather and rust. Sat at a bench at the start of the Tampines Park connector, and observed cyclists. Spotted two cycling mothers on bicycles with a second seat in front for big children say the age of 8-12. One old man who strangely covered the bicycle seat with a plastic bag, and a teenage boy polytechnic looking student cycling Ah Beng style. Cycling did not look attractive to me there and if I was someone who minded my own business, I wouldn’t even bother considering to cycle. I would rather walk. Walking in the park connector is quite pleasant. Girls especially usually want to look pretty and hip youngsters don’t want to be seen on poor old black half damaged bicycles.  I wondered where the bicycle service shops are, and wonder if there are more people cycling in the weekdays during peak hours to the MRT station. Also figured the bicycles parked outdoors next to the train station surely end up having scorched seats, making it uncomfortable for people to mount. Knowing young Singaporeans, any form of discomfort is a put off. I cannot imagine people willingly wanting to cycle in this condition.

Cycled to Buona Vista MRT last Monday, and it was an ok ride as well. But had to leave bicycle at the rack in the afternoon because it rained very hard. Decided to leave the bicycle there for two days, Tuesday and Wednesday to test safety and also weather conditions. So I thought about overnight security for bicycles, and how much of it is needed. In the context of Singapore, nothing ever gets stolen. Installation of security cameras are too costly and there is no good return on investment. We can get another point in the book for being the safest city in Asia, and possibly the world by having the least number of stolen bicycles on record. But weather wise, unfortunately, we are in a hot and humid climate, best situation for rust. In the short span of 2 days, rust developed in some joint areas of the bicycle. The tyres also became flat. This meant that there is further damage to the bicycle because cycling on flat tyres hurt the insides of the tyre.

Today’s ride to Buona Vista MRT was a revelation too. Riding on unsuitable paths (meaning cyclist has to dismount and manoeuvre curbs and road works, give way and slow down for pedestrians etc.) makes walker faster. Also, locking the bicycle takes time. I am not sure if it is because I am too slow or that it is normal. Something about snap lock came to mind.

Was at Bugis yesterday and found there are nicely designed bicycle parks at Bugis. But again generic system has to be derived. It may be a project worth pursuing.

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