Thursday, 7 April 2011

Cycle hire virgin no longer

It's been a good day today. Not least because, at long last, and months after my key arrived, I've managed my first ride on one of the London hire bikes.

The weather was warm, and I needed to get from Holborn to Paddington. As someone who isn't used to riding in the middle of London, I bottled out of using the docking station on High Holborn because of the traffic. I had walked up to the British museum before I felt that I should stop being such a wimp.
I fumbled around a bit, but after a couple of false starts, the undocking process was straightforward enough.

I'm not exactly trailblazing here, so the ride itself was much as expected. My route finding to Paddington was a bit hit and miss, but by the time I arrived I felt I was coping OK with the traffic. It helped that nearly everything on the road (apart from a few fast cyclists) was moving at a slow pace, and my rather sedate progress didn't feel as out of place as it would around here.

I didn't remember to keep careful track of the time, but I think I got the bike docked within my free half hour, despite having to search a little bit for the Paddington docking station.

So if there is anyone else left who hasn't got round to trying them yet, the traffic isn't as scary as expected, they are not at all bad to ride, and the system is easy to use. They have my vote as a practical and fun way of covering a few miles across the middle of London. I still prefer not to think of them as B*r*s bikes though.

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