A standard Sunday bike ride: down the hill, along the treed lanes, and to the Lonsdale Quay for lunch. There along the pier was the USS Lake Champlain and thousands of people in line to get closer to see it.
Amongst all the people, I spied two unusual bikes. I stopped to look and fell into conversation with the couple tending the bikes. Turns out they imported 150 electric bikes from Switzerland and are now selling them to delighted users. The bike is the +Stromer-.
They kindly allowed me to take a turn on one of the bikes. I am sold–it is all I can do to resist pulling cash out of the bank and running down to buy one.
The ride is like no other bike ride I have ever done. You have to pedal to make the battery do its thing; you have to change gears to adjust to road inclination and the speed of your peddling. It is just like an ordinary bike to use, except you can feel the power of electricity propelling you along.
I sped along the flat, whizzed up the hill, and slowed to a snail’s pace downhill. My legs and heart were working, but the speed they produced was possible only via a battery.
The bike, as the photo above attests is beautiful. Looks like an ordinary bike as the battery is hidden in one of the tubes of the frame.
I keep telling myself to resist the temptation to go buy one. They are expensive, about $3,000+. Taxes and the rest will soon enough take you to $4,000 I guess. And I get by very well with my Cannondale town bike. Except up those punishing hill to Cap U. Damn, I spent only twice that much to buy out my 25,000 kilometer Honda when the lease was up. How can I justify so expensive a toy?
The answers are easy: you deserve it; you have the money; it will be fun; you will get home from the office so much faster. I will continue this internal debate a while yet.