Just Like Riding a Bike






As you can guess from the title, I bought a bike this weekend!

I have not ridden a bike in at least ten years. It was a nerve-wracking experience, having to go buy one by myself. (Things are different here in Japan, because you have to register your bike at City Hall. Luckily, a lot of the bike stores will do that for you, which I was very thankful for.) Even worse was when the owner wanted me to test it in front of him, which was like, “Okay, let me swing my leg over this bike, whose kind I haven’t touched in ten years, and pedal up and down next to this busy street. What’s the worst that could happen?”

I got back into the swing of it, though (eventually). It really is what they say. (You never forget…)

But, back when I rode bikes, we never rode them in the street. Here, it’s all streets. Streets filled with people, other bikes, scooters, and cars.

People don’t take it easy, either! I get passed on my bike constantly, and it makes me so nervous. I’ve pulled off to the side of the road and stopped frequently, just to let people behind me go ahead. I even managed to scrape a wall (with my arm) trying to avoid hitting these three kids that were riding side by side.

It’s definitely something I’ll have to get used to, I guess.

It’s trimmed my commute time down by half (to a third, sometimes), so I definitely don’t regret it. I thought it was just one of those things I just wouldn’t do, buying a bike. It’s a little costly, and there’s definitely the danger factor (one of the safety seminars, of course, recounted a story of a girl dying while riding her bicycle), but the time freed up, and not having to walk in the summer heat, has made things so much better.

I also have more opportunities to explore, without spending too much on transportation. I completely advocate getting a bike now, ha.

Anyway, there’s a moon viewing tonight! I didn’t know that was a thing, but I’m happy that our dorm has organized it!

See you guys next week!