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Because I’ve never met a pun that I did not like, Dahoney (n): girl about town on a folding bike.

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I visited Nashville this weekend for our friend Erin’s bachelorette party and Trisha had the Dahon ready and waiting for me. Our friend Wanda from San Diego also took it for a spin. This funny alien bike has always tripped me out and I have a hard time wrapping my brain around how it works. But it does. The spindly creature provides a shockingly quick and comfortable ride that feels oddly similar to a regular bike. Granted, no one will take little D on endurance rides or racing (although an all-folding-bike race would be adorable), but it’s a sensible choice for shorter utilitarian rides. A major benefit is fitting a wide range of riders, going from me (5’7) to Trisha in the few seconds it took to adjust the seat. The only issue I had was the slight squirrely feeling down hill and even more so up hill, but nothing extreme. I also felt more vulnerable next to cars and trucks, but that’s mostly in my head, since I’m used to big weighty bikes.

And now I want a folding bike. Such is the danger of riding new bikes. What a neat trinket to carry around on plane and train trips, so that I’d always have a bike with me. You never know when you’ll need a bike! It’s not cheap, though, so it will remain a twinkle in the fairy’s eye for now.

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Beautiful Bicycles: Bakfiets (a real S.U.V.)

There are two types of bikes that look so odd, I had a hard time imagining how they worked: folding bikes and bakfiets. I experienced the magic of the folding bike while riding the Dahon, and now I have experienced the feat of engineering that is the bakfiets.

Since Mr. Dottie and I sold our only car in January, I’ve never missed it or needed a car for any purpose. Recently, I encountered a challenging situation: hauling a folding table and folding chairs for a fundraiser I helped organize. The bakfiets came to my rescue. I borrowed the folding table from Dutch Bike Chicago and, knowing that I am car-free, one of the owners offered me the use of his personal bakfiets. Yesss!

On the way to the event: me with a folding table

On the way to the event: me with a folding table

The bakfiets carried the folding table and the eight folding chairs perfectly – as two different loads, although if I really wanted to push it, I could have piled it all on together. Each load also included several bags of supplies.

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