Monday, May 27, 2013

Citibike Rocks

The missus and I got our key fobs on Friday, just in the nick of time, and rode around today. There is something a bit silly about paying to take a subway to ride a free bike when we've got a few two-wheelers sitting around right here at home... but anyway...

The bikes are great. They're not speedster road bikes, but they ride and handle well. Everything is well tuned (as you might expect, on Day One). Though one bike we first picked up had a weird very high-pitched annoying sound, perhaps from the dynamo. We swapped it for another. You can easily pick them up and drop them off, just as promised. All the bike stations are not in operation yet, and the map app wasn't working today, but those kinks will get worked out.

What was strange is that normally when you bike in the city you feel invisible. You're in the middle of people and everybody just ignores you. But no, not on a Citibike! You can't help but be an ambassador of good will as people stop and ask questions. Or they point and talk to their friends about the bike as you roll by. Not only that, but from these people you can't help but feel good will towards bikes in NYC. That was a strange feeling!

We picked up our bikes around 57th and Lex. For a brief while, going down a dedicated bike lane on 2nd Ave looking at 6 bikes in front of me (two were Citibikes, the rest normal bikes--there were a lot of bikes out today), I felt like I was in Amsterdam.

We rode down to Saigon Bakery for some delicious banh mi (swapping bikes once on the way just to try it out). Then we rode up to Union Square and checked out a few things (did you know Andrew Worhol's factory, where he got shot, was on the 6th floor of the Decker Building overlooking the Square? I sure didn't). Then we picked up a $66(!) gallon of maple syrup and took the subway home. It couldn't have been better (unless there were some bikes in Astoria).

Here's Citibike's Day One Recap.

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