Thursday, June 18, 2009

after After the rain

Thought I should write a few notes about Kao's last post.

In the first picture, you see what looks like abandoned bicycles parked in a peculiar way. I don't know why they are parked like that, but in Japan it's not rare to see bicycles that look fairly new abandoned like this. Kao told me that there was a new law passed recently that made certain kinds of bikes illegal or something. I don't have any more details on that, but rather than fixing them to make them legal, a lot of people seem to have just bought new ones and abandoned their old ones as proper disposal of bikes can be costly. We haven't witnessed people actually abandoning their bikes, so this is more speculation though. The reason why people seem to treat bikes as if they are disposal is because they are so cheap. I don't know how they do it (I'm not sure I'd want to find out), but a regular mamachari with a basket, rear rack, kickstand and front light can be bought for under $100. In fact we've bought 2 of them in about 2 years and they were both less than $100, but worked just fine for most regular duties. You would have to pay a few times more in the US to buy a new bike which would offer the same quality.

mamachari cycling
(Kao on a mamachari)

It's good that these bikes are so accessible and cheap enough to be affordable by majority of people, but at the same time it's too bad that people don't treat them with love. It's true they are not like the gorgeous Pashleys or Azors that are so lovable, but I think with most bikes, affection grows as you spend time with it and maintain it well.

That's just a little beef I have with the way people treat these perfectly good bicycles. I guess it wasn't so much a note about Kao's post though.

No comments:

Post a Comment