A New Cycling Fan is Born

Yesterday was a holiday in Germany and Switzerland and I joined in the German custom of taking the bridge day off today to make a four day weekend. Following the great hike on Sunday I was looking for something to do this weekend involving some physical activity combined with socializing so decided to join a group of about 20 on a short cycling tour from Munich to the town of Aying, lunch in a beer garden there and then the return trip to Munich. It was estimated to be a 2 hour ride out and back plus a couple of hours lunch, so it worked in perfectly with plans to join a BBQ last night.

I got up early because my first step was to find a bike. No, I do not own a bike after over 3 years in Europe because quite honestly I didn't think I liked biking. I signed up a week ago for the DeutscheBahn CallaBike program. 5 Euros to sign up, and a few cents a minute to rent up to a flat rate per day, week or month.

I took the Ubahn to a spot where the online map indicated quite a few were strewn about, dialed the phone number on the bike, received my pin code and off I went to the meeting point at the Deutsches Museum.

A few highlights of the day:
70 Kilometers (against plan of 35 km)
12 Hours Out and About
3 Beer Gardens
Lost and Found (more than once)
Two Breakdowns
A Thunderstorm
German Stares
Stunning Views
Many, Many Laughs

I am thinking about buying a used bike for as great as the DB bike and system were, something a bit more lightweight would be nicer. I think I will go for a used Dutch bike with a big basket.

Today I am letting my butt recover from all the hours in the seat. Ouchie!

Posted from Munich


vailian said...

Terrific post! Yeah, get a Gazelle used-- the new ones are all made in Taiwan or someplace like that and the brakes don't work-- and a bike basket from the Zinsmayer firm.
And don't forget to put Schwalbe Marathon Plus tires on-- they are guaranteed not to puncture, which is great for riding over broken beer bottles!

aimee said...

what a marvelous day! is that hummus in the middle of the plate (next to the pretzel)?

Michelle said...

Thanks for the tips, Vailian - I will start the search.

Aimee- the spread on the plate is a Bavarian specialty called Obatzda. It is a mix of Camembert cheese, Romadur cheese and butter plus some spices. Classic beer garden food and highly addictive!

Anonymous said...

Fiets niet nalaten me nu

Expat Traveler said...

How cool!!!! I'm a big bike fan and had 2 bikes while living in Switzerland.

Loved your photos from the trip. How cool is that!

We biked yesterday, only 30km to your big ride. If I would have been out with my group, I would have done about that...

One thing still puzzles me. How do you always manage to get back to Munich when I thought you'd be in Geneva now?

Expat Traveler said...

p.s. 4 day weekends rock. i had one last weekend.

Michelle said...

Hi ET,

I am based in Munich always, regardless where my projects are. As such I am entitled to live there and go home every weekend, assuming I am not on a very long distance project (then its once every 4 or 8 weeks). The last year I decided to live project based (Cologne and Zurich) but in February I decided I didnt want that instability anymore so set up camp here in Munich again. Now I spend every moment I can here.

Corregio said...

So you were one of the bikers I passed on the way to Aying? ;-)
For used bikes try http://www.dynamo-muenchen.de/ or http://www.secondhand-sport.de/.

Michelle said...

Corregio, If you saw a big group of ragtag riders having too much fun, yes that was us :)

Randy said...

I had a good day, too! After a late breakfast because my staff decided to sleep in, I napped; Had an early dinner, and napped before going to bed. No time for riding!