Adventures and misadventures in France.


Last week, I decided to try biking to work. With the best intentions, I researched potential routes, gathered weather-appropriate gear, and purchased a safety light and reflective vest. Rain was expected for Monday, so Max loaned me a rain jacket. I felt prepared and excited.

Expectation : 8 km, 30 minutes, stunning countryside views

Things did not go according to plan.

Leaving the house, there were some ominous clouds in the distance, but no rain just yet. Cruising along the route as planned, I was quickly reminded how little physical exertion I’m accustomed to. Sweating through three layers, I arrived in a quiet neighborhood and estimated that it was the halfway point. Someone’s adorable golden retriever got loose and began running along the road beside me, which was encouraging. But in a moment, the dog miscalculated his enthusiasm and crashed into the back wheel. Shocked and convinced that I had just killed my spirit animal, I threw the bike into a ditch and ran back.


After several minutes of pure panic, the dog was actually running around like normal, so it was time to go. Arriving at the next intersection, however, it was clear that someone (the map or I) had really messed up. Not only was I tired and very late for work, I was also lost.

Cue torrential downpour.

For a minute, I considered calling someone from the office to come find me. It also became apparent that Max’s jacket was not suited for rain at all. But another half mile down the road, I finally found a familiar road and knew the office wasn’t too far. Distance is relative when you’re struggling to maneuver a bike uphill on a busy road in the rain. Finally I arrived at the office, exhaused and soaking wet, a full hour late.

Reality : 11 km, 75 minutes, monsoon season

Where did it all go wrong?

Sure there are things I could’ve done differently. Bike the route ahead of time, get an earlier start, bring an actual rain jacket… details.

Will I ever bike again?

Absolutely. Maybe even tomorrow. But I’ll probably catch a ride from a coworker in the morning and stick to the mostly-downhill ride home for now.



Comments on: "The harsh reality of biking to work" (13)

  1. I’ve been trying to convince The Turk to purchase bikes for all of us. He is of the opinion that we will probably be dead within a day if he does. Turkish drivers being cray cray and all.

    • Sweetteamob said:

      If you find some decent biking routes, he might be more open to the idea! Good luck!

  2. Aunt Karen said:

    Looking sporty Kim!

  3. Oh no what a nightmare!!! It all started so lovely sounding!! Well done for that not dampening (excuse the pun!) your spirits! X

    • Sweetteamob said:

      Haha thanks for commenting! Things definitely didn’t work out as I had hoped, but it makes for a great story!

  4. Very funny – although I’m sure it didn’t seem it at the time! At least you got a nice blog post out of it at the very least! Thanks for following my blog! Linda.

  5. Oh goodness, that experience would be enough to turn me off biking forever! I’m impressed that you’re so positive about it 🙂 I live in Holland where EVERYONE bikes to work, but I prefer to walk. Just the thought of trying to find a place to park my bike amongst the thousands of others seriously stresses me out! I do love to bike when I have nowhere to be though 🙂

    • Sweetteamob said:

      Thanks for the comment Sophie! This weekend I was finally able to get the bike repaired (another reason why last Monday was terrible – the gears were misaligned!), and biking to a coworker’s house is far more reasonable. I’m jealous of Holland’s biking culture! But I agree that walking to work is far more enjoyable if the distance isn’t an issue.

  6. Bravo – Bon courage and merci for visiting my blog.

  7. […] Dog casualties : 1 […]

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