Week 10 starts with Mr & Mrs Expat Julia welcoming a new bicycle into the family, hip hip hoera! It wasn’t that long ago that I was a car loving English gal looking curiously at these pedal driven contraptions, and smiling politely at the mention of getting my own. Now I am positively looking for anywhere to go so I can selflessly cruise the streets on my beaaautiful bike… but wait, cycling in tandem, it’s not the same is it?
After watching the invigorating and emotionally charged ‘The Iron Lady‘ at the Pathe Tuschinski, followed by an ever-tasty meal at Wagamamas I packed my fear of cycling through the nine streets into my saddle bags. The occasion? Cocktails of course! I cycled over to Vespers with a chum, over-anxious for the whole journey as the concept of ‘keeping a safe distance’ does not seem to apply to cyclists – especially friends. Well, I say! [in my best Maggie Thatcher impression] This will take some getting used to! After two martinis and immense ridicule from the barmen at my suggestion that perhaps I should not cycle home, I cycled home in record time, arriving just before my carriage turned into a pumpkin.
The real test was cycling with Mr Expat Julia – I had been warned by friends that I now had to learn a whole new set of ‘partner rules’: To follow your other half through a red light, or not to follow, that is the question. Handily this was answered en route to the Albert Cuypmarkt where I learned that I can actually perform an emergency stop using back-pedal brakes! Hmmm, this too will take more practice, as will cycling through Vondelpark on a sunny Sunday afternoon (sorry to anyone who heard me swear). I did however, discover a perk to being the following partner on two wheels – if you get lost, it’s not your fault!
You’ve been reading the explorations of Expat Julia. Over and out.
1. I’ll post a one minute update at the end of each week of the new places I’ve been.
2. If I can’t sensibly read it out loud in one minute it’s too long (and boring), much shorter means I’ve been lazy so shame on me!