Forget Shadowfax Friday August 28, 2009, 0 comments

Forget Shadowfax, last night, the king of all steeds was my trusty Bixi bike!

I’ve been in Montreal most of this week for work, along with one of my developers, Matt, and we decided to rent bikes yesterday and see a bit more of the city.

The first step was to walk about 100 feet North of our hotel to the Bixi bike rack. These are scattered all across the city, and are really easy to use. Insert credit card, print ticket with bike code on it (or, for the environmentally anal, simply memorize it on screen instead), then choose a bike, enter code, and go. Yes, it really was that easy.

Bixi bikes

So, we got our bikes, and rode through the city. In many places, Montreal is much more bike friendly than Toronto, and what’s more, the drivers actually seem to understand that they share the road with cyclists. At no time did I feel threatened or aggressed by drivers. What a refreshing change.

The bikes are… okay. They’re relatively heavy, though not unbearably so, and they’ve got three-speed hub shifters which are pretty well geared, though not enough for the ride up the mountain we took. The brakes were my biggest concern. The drum brakes sometimes felt like they were connected to something else, a different bike, maybe. Cos sometimes I’d squeeze those levers, and get nothing back. Aside from that, they were great, if a little nerdy looking.

As I mentioned, we rode around town for a while, then up to the top of the mountain, where one is treated to an amazing view of the city.

Montreal

Montreal

Then we had a relatively hairy ride back down the mountain (brakes, remember?) and parked the bikes back where we got them. We could have returned them to any Bixi rack in the city, but we figured we were going for dinner near the hotel anyway, so why not just put them back where we got them.

All in all, my Bixi experience was incredibly positive. Next time Sarah comes to Montreal with me, we’re definitely going to take advantage of the system. I hope something similar makes it to Toronto!


Comments

Commenting has ended for this post, but I'd still love to hear from you.

The website of Adrian Lebar

A Rain of Frogs is written, designed and built by Adrian Lebar, a twenty(!) year veteran of web design and development. He is currently managing web and mobile development teams at Canada’s largest and most beloved classifieds site, Kijiji!

He is a father, sailor, snowboarder, skier, cyclist, writer, artist, graphic designer, classically trained musician and afraid of heights.

Adrian is not currently available for freelance and contract work. Learn more.

Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind.”
- Dr. Seuss

Twitter

  • Was just pondering about how both writing and programming can rewrite your brain, and came to the following, which… t.co/Nm2G3G0Mz0 Friday September 18, 2020
  • Sony was, like, one front dial away from converting me over to their Full Frame cameras. One dial. t.co/C8ZMVTqjJD Monday September 14, 2020
  • t.co/Jj5Je55OyC Tuesday August 25, 2020
  • @mrmatthogg You certainly want to work with him. Tuesday May 12, 2020
  • @mrmatthogg Lately you sound like me 3 years ago, failing agains the profligate use of users bandwidth and computin… t.co/DGOM7XfVjZ Monday May 11, 2020
  • Do you remember when you joined Twitter? I do! #MyTwitterAnniversary Well, I didn’t, but twitter reminded me. t.co/Rl9JY4gtwA Wednesday April 1, 2020
  • Weeks of coding will save you hours of planning. Thursday February 6, 2020
  • Hey @nationalpost your website is unreadable on mobile thanks to your slow loading, crufty page and your display ad… t.co/UQp4BTJ8jR Wednesday January 29, 2020