A Second Opinion: Biking in Madrid!

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Bicycle parked in front of a shop in the Rastro,  Madrid’s iconic flea market


By Mary Foran

In my long life, I have had many bicycles and have enjoyed myself immensely upon them! They really are marvelous machines and many people in the U.S.A. collect older versions of these versatile and useful elements of transportation.

Having a flattish place to ride upon them, like the Castellana, would be ideal, as I have found that the hills and dales of my hometown really make using bicycles a challenge. Helmet laws and the varying styles of bicycles are a factor in the whole bicycle rage, and the absolute danger inherent in sharing the road with automobiles has made the construction of bicycle paths an important part of the city’s road development budget.

Public bicycle stand on Atocha, not far from Castellana

There is even a free bicycle program in many parts of downtown and the city, and bicycle stands can be found everywhere to lock up bicycle commuters basic transportation. Bicycles are great for short trips to the store if you have a backpack or a basket on them for carrying a few groceries.

Some people actually use bicycles exclusively for their means of transportation. And most of these people are young enough to do so! College students, high schoolers and children riding around their neighborhoods, and a few die-hard cyclers who really know how to change gears!

I used a bicycle on bike paths at the University and had the time of my life! But since time has passed, my knees have weakened and cycling just isn’t for me anymore! Old age comes to us all!

Also, distances are so great in this country, the U.S.A. from which I write, that you have to be quite the athlete or a Tour de France or a Vuelta de Espana expert to really cycle properly up those winding roads and hills, and down!

A cold winter day in Madrid

The Madrid Central proposals really intrigued me. Somehow the idea of a kind of Spanish rick-shaw service came to mind with bicycle-driven tasseled canopied carts moving people around the capital city of Spain. That, of course, would work better in the beautiful summertimes of Madrid!

Winter cold might make the venture moot!

Well, summer is sure to come, and can spring be far away?

Have a Happy New Year and think about it!

Mary Foran

P. S. The pall over Madrid is visible for miles, so I hope the new proposals work!
Related posts
> WAR OF THE BICYCLES: THE UNEXPECTED CONSEQUENCES OF BICIMAD, https://www.guidepost.es/war-of-the-bicycles-the-unexpected-consequences-of-bicimad/
> MADRID: MAD ABOUT BIKES, https://www.guidepost.es/madrid-mad-about-bikes/
> THE REAL MADRID: HAUTE FASHION, YOUNG FLAMENCO ARTISTS, BIKES & MORE BIKES, https://www.guidepost.es/the-real-madrid-haute-fashion-young-flamenco-artists-bikes-more-bikes/
> THE APPALLING AIR OF MADRID: HOW TRUE?, https://www.guidepost.es/the-appalling-air-of-madrid-how-true/
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Images
Featured image/Juan Antonio Segal via Flickr, CC BY2.0
Bicycle stand/Sierra Jackson
Winter in Madrid/Giuseppe Buccola, Unsplash