Local Heart, Global Soul

November 12, 2016

Way More Than Fair Weather Friends…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

The summer of 2016 was for the most part (ok, discount June more or less entirely) one of excellent weather.

As I mentioned in yesterday’s post, Himself and adults from three or four other families took turns to supervise a bigger group of kids on the street or take them to the beach during  week days.

Weekends they would forsake their bike rides to the beach and join me in a car ride to one of the spots that had a car park close to the beach café we wanted to go to.

Luckily with a seven seater car we manage to pile in extra kids so the kids weren’t short of a friend to take with them.

The Dutch are a cycling nation and nowhere is easier to get to by bike than car, is the beach.

All along the dunes there are hundreds of cycles racks, which at the height of summer can see bikes chained together on one rack up to four deep and every available signpost or fence surrounded by clusters of bicycle hardware.

Our weekend visits to La Cantina on the south side of the harbour were no different, but one of the attractions was that this was one of the quietest spots along the shore, so bike parking was never as bad as I have sometimes seen it in other places during my time here in the Netherlands.

One thing did catch my eye, and that is the sharp rise in the use of “Bakfietsen”  (cargo bikes) in the last decade: one reason their popularity increase is that although they are very expensive to buy, they hold their value incredibly well and you can sell one in good condition, second-hand for near new prices.

This makes them an excellent investment and the Dutch are never ones to pass up a good thing when a deal makes sense.

It’s therefore no surprise that I saw quite a few bakfietsen during our visits to the beach. Two bikes did perplex me for a moment because I only saw strong metal “prongs” (not sharp ones) sticking out in different configurations from several bikes, then the penny dropped: these were also bakfietsen, but ones where the “bak” (Literally translates as “container”) i.e. the kid-carrying compartment, can be taken off the bike and taken with you.

I don’t know the exact brand of this type, but they are soft sided ones similar to the “Gazelle” bakfietsen in my photographs.

Hard sided bakfietsen are of course heavier and are as far as I know, never detachable.  I love how this mode of transport has been embraced, and how the trend is growing. They even come with sturdy rain covers for the winter months, making these fabulous bikes way more than just fair weather friends.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

 

4 Comments »

  1. very nice..!!

    Comment by Bird Animal Nature and Wildlife Photography — November 12, 2016 @ 3:32 am | Reply

    • Bird Animal Nature and Wildlife Photography,

      Thank You! 🙂

      Comment by kiwidutch — November 13, 2016 @ 11:24 pm | Reply

  2. ‘Bakfieten’ !! plural of bakfiet?
    One often sees that english speaking people seems to think that fiets is the plural of fiet, And that bike translates to fiet in dutch.
    but I thought that you are of dutch descent.

    In dutch fiets is singular, plural is fietsen.

    the softsided bakfiets is a Cazelle cabby. Somewhat newer than the hardsided bakfiets but more than 10 years available. And they are quite common.
    See:
    https://www.gazelle.nl/stadsfietsen/bakfiets/

    Comment by Reservebelg — November 13, 2016 @ 10:17 pm | Reply

    • Reservebelg ,

      Oops, Apologies …My error, Yes I do see it now that you point it out, it was a spelling error and I didn’t see it. Sorry. You are of course correct. (I take morphine based pain medication and don’t concentrate well) I do try and check spelling as most as possible. I have now fixed it in my text.

      Thank you too for the link, Strange as it might seem, I have seen many a Gazelle Bakfiets but this is the first time I’ve seen one “disassembled” as it were.

      Comment by kiwidutch — November 13, 2016 @ 11:11 pm | Reply


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