Last night, in the midst of an April rainstorm that had lasted all day, I went for a puddle-pedaling adventure on a Nice Ride bike.
If you don’t know (how couldn’t you?! but I’ll explain anyway), Nice Ride Minnesota is a bike-sharing program that’s been filling Twin Cities streets with bright green bikes since 2010. The stations are everywhere, and with a simple swipe of plastic, they’ll lend you a bike. I’m a Nice Ride member, so I need only swipe my VIB (Very Important Biker) key, and I get a bike for up to an hour for free.
Nice Rides are awesome because of how durable, functional and comfortable they are. I own a bazillion bikes (actually, just six), but I’m still a fan of Nice Ride. Why? Because they enable a multi-modal lifestyle. I can take the bus home from Saint Paul, for instance, and get off at the one-time Metrodome spot, then hop onto a Nice Ride and bike home. If I go for a long walk, but get annoyed at the prospect of walking all the way back, I can find a Nice Ride station and pedal homeward.
Grocery shopping? The Nice Ride has a basket. Bar hopping? Yes. You don’t have to worry about locks or lights, or someone stealing your bike. One time, I ran into some mechanical issues on my single-speed and balanced it on the basket of the Nice Ride. It was awkward but it worked. Nice Ride is always there.
So, my puddle-pedaling adventure. I set off from home, and for the next hour, instead of wailing and whining about how miserable it was outside, I found some fun in exploring for big puddles and biking through them really fast on a Nice Ride — in waterproof boots. I also took a few photos, like a true Millennial, presented here to you: