Welcome to my new blog! Following many years of graduate study in musicology (see my bio if you don't know what musicology is), I am finally embarking on my fieldwork portion of my degree, spending one year in Germany. For all the latest updates on Music, Life, and Travel, read on, friends!

Sunday, October 14

Mein Fahrrad!

Fahrrad means bicycle in German. Since purchasing my amazing bike back in Illinois, I would like to think of myself as a bit of an amateur cycling aficionada. I mostly feel empowered when I bike on the street, wearing my helmet and biker’s shorts, even if I may look slightly ridiculous in such clothing. (No worries, I would often carry clothes to change into, so as not to embarrass my students and coworkers!).

I had not really thought about biking at all until I lived in Freiburg, Germany, in 2006. While there, many people chose biking as their preferred means of transportation. My host parents biked to work; one of my roommates was even a cycling courier! I did not, however, fully embrace the awesomeness that is biking in Freiburg; I “babysat” a friend’s bike from January to April (not the best biking months in most places), and I rarely biked.

The idea stuck with me, so when my MIL offered to help B and I get bikes several years ago, I was excited to get a nice bicycle I could use for commuting to school in Champaign. It really wasn’t too difficult then for me to decide to also get a bike in Bonn, even though I couldn’t really afford to buy a nice, new one. I went to the Bonn University bike flea market the first weekend of September in search of a used bike. I took a very long time to decide on a bike. If it weren’t for a bit of embarrassment in getting up so early to check out the market and then leave empty-handed, I probably would not have chosen one that day. I am now 100% glad that I did choose a bike that day! In contrast with the day I bought the bike and the handle bars got so loose that I could not even manage to ride home, I am now pleased to have a bike with lots of gears, a self-powered light, and a possible space for a basket.

I did not ride much in September; we left Bonn early enough, and I sadly left my ride in my hotel’s garage. I picked up Blue (that’s right, I just named my bike!) from the hotel when I got to Bonn over a week ago, and it took a few days to get reacquainted. I can now happily say that things are all that they should be, as far as biking in Germany is concerned. Sunday I biked along the Rhine on the way to church (I saved €5.20!), and Tuesday I biked to a choir rehearsal, in the dark, to parts of Bonn I had never been before! I have been inspired to take more sight-seeing trips around my city; as my roommate said, Bonn is really a biker’s city – it is not designed for cars! I hope to be able to avoid buying a transit ticket in Bonn and to instead bike, walk, and get rides from others as needed! I have to spend nearly €17 each time I go to Koblenz to meet with my mentor, so biking instead of traveling by train may be a nice way to save some money in other ways.

Mein geiles Fahrrad - Blue!
On a related note, here is a link to a song of one of my favorite German bands. The song is aptly named “Mein Fahrrad.” Here you can find the German text with English translation. I don’t necessarily agree with all this group sings in this song, but my bicycle is blue, after all…

Viel Spass zum radeln!

1 comment:

  1. !!!!!!!!! "Mein Fahrrad ist mein lebings Lied auf deutsch!